Thursday April 26, 2018
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Reforms in corrupt PLA can affect Indian Army

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Corruption is a gambit so large that it can and does encompass every or any country irrespective of them being democratic or communist. China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) is going under a long-anticipated reform process according to the South China Morning Post. The reforms are expected to help solve the issues of deep corruption within the Chinese defence forces.

The planned reforms, according to the Chinese leadership, is expected to reorganize the existing seven military zones into four separate commands while cutting about 300,000 troops to lessen the complications of power.

The formal announcement of the onset of restructuring was officially declared by the top military brass at a gathering of leaders involved in national defence and military reforms who are directed by the China’s Central Military Commission.

“I announce that China will reduce military personnel numbers by 300,000,” Xi was quoted as saying in the New York Times. Xi once stated that the armed services were “loyally committed to its sacred duty of defending the security of the motherland and the peaceful life of the people, and loyally committed to the sacred duty of safeguarding world peace.”

The Hong Kong daily explains PLA to be: “The PLA was extensively involved in economic affairs until the late 1990s when the central leadership realised that the army’s profit-seeking operations had resulted in PLA top brass abusing their special privileges and power by promoting their business interests.”

It mentions the instance of senior naval officers conveying warships overseas to smuggle household appliance and vehicles (cars).

The PLA which used to be a peasants’ army once has now grown to perform duties to safeguard a nation so significant, geographical and political as China. Although the country is known to be a strictly regulated nation, loopholes still exist in their administration as well as governance.

The urge to publically mention the need of reforms represents the intensity of the situation in China as the country tweaks and trims its outflow of information.

India can be highly impacted by the repercussions of their rectification. India shares an extensive border with China and that’s where both the armies face each other at large. With the developments taking place in the PLA, it is expected to lead to a better and strengthened military work zone across the border.

A corrupt and comparatively less efficient Chinese defence forces would be easy for India to target in distress, though, if improved to be fitter and better prepared for any contingency. Also, an intromission of power on India can lead to a lower supreme response.

Adding on to the military stress from the other side, Indian border would perhaps come under one Military Areas Commands (MAC) instead of two as today, which will tremendously ameliorate the efficiency of the Chinese ‘border’ forces creating a supplementary burden onto the India forces, which are already sustaining themselves in an adverse environment, unlike their Chinese counterpart.

India has already started working on bringing desired developments in the field to not be on the back foot in the times of conflict.

The Indian Army has a doctrine called ‘Cold Start’ a mechanised infantry, a heavy strike crop to essentially strike against Pakistan in the event of a war. On similar lines to protect its India-China border, they have devised a comparatively recent strategy comprising of “Mountain Strike Corps”.

India is to proceed with the formation of a new Mountain Strike Corps of over 40,000 troops to be deployed along the disputed China border region by the end of 2016.

The infrastructure of the same is yet to be set up. Though once effectively put in place, it would strengthen the north-eastern border of India with China to a great level. This corp will be specifically trained to work and deliver their best in the mountain region.

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  • Maximus

    these are temporary solutions to the problem. Although such action from Indian side is necessary but it will only increase a tension in the border region. The only possible way to reach peace at border is when citizens of both the countries will force their government to roll back Army baring few check posts in the initial period and make border more pours for more trade and mutual border state development (because having bilateral talks with china on border issues are useless). Developing complex economic dependence between India and China is the only way to solve border issue.

  • Maximus

    these are temporary solutions to the problem. Although such action from Indian side is necessary but it will only increase a tension in the border region. The only possible way to reach peace at border is when citizens of both the countries will force their government to roll back Army baring few check posts in the initial period and make border more pours for more trade and mutual border state development (because having bilateral talks with china on border issues are useless). Developing complex economic dependence between India and China is the only way to solve border issue.

Next Story

India China’s Fight Over the Doklam Plateau Explained

Doklam or Donglang, is a disputed area between China and Bhutan located near their tri-junction with India

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picture from- indiaopines.com

By Ruchika Verma

  • India and China have an old history of disputes
  • This time, the dispute is regarding the Dokplam Plateau
  • The area is of strategic importance for both the nations

Disputes between India and China are not at all uncommon. The rivalry between the two nations is famous. There have been several disputes between the two on the India-China border in past, and there seems to be no stopping for these disputes in the present or future, for that matter.

India and China have a n old history of repeated disputes. zeenews.india.com
India and China have an old history of repeated disputes. zeenews.india.com

In June 2017, the world witnessed yet another dispute arising between India and China. This time the dispute was about China building a road extending to Doklam Plateau, which both nations have been fighting over for years now.

Also Read: China is likely to get involved if India disrupts $46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

History of the dispute 

Doklam or Donglang (in Chinese), is a disputed area between China and Bhutan located near their tri-junction with India. India doesn’t directly claim the area but supports Bhutan’s claims on it.

India fits into the picture, as this plateau is an important area for India. Not only is Bhutan one of the biggest allies of India; China gaining access over the Doklam Plateau will also endanger India’s borders, making them vulnerable to attacks.

Dopkam plateau is an important area near India, China and Bhutan's borders.
Dopkam plateau is an important area near India, China and Bhutan’s borders.

Apart from the hostile history of the two nations, the Doklam Plateau is also important for India to maintain its control over a land corridor that connects to its remote northeastern States. China building a road through Doklam surely threatens that control.

A complete timeline of what happened in the recent Doklam Standoff 

On 16 June 2017, Chinese troops with construction vehicles and excavators began extending an existing road southward on the Doklam plateau, near India’s border. It was Bhutan which raised the alarm for India.

On 18 June 2017, India responded by sending around 270 Indian troops, with weapons and two bulldozers to evict the Chinese troops from Doklam.

On 29 June 2017, Bhutan protested against the construction of a road in the disputed territory.  According to the Bhutanese government, China attempted to extend a road in an area which is shared both Bhutan and India, along with China.

Between 30 June 2017 and 5 July 2017, China released multiple statements justifying their claim over the Doklam plateau. They cited reasons as to why the Doklam standoff wasn’t really needed. And how China has not intruded into India’s territory to incite the standoff.

On 19th July 2017, China asked India again to withdraw its troops from the Doklam. On 24th July 2017,  Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, in his statement, asked India to withdraw and behave themselves to maintain peace.

India and China seem to never agree when it comes to their borders. BBC
India and China seem to never agree when it comes to their borders. BBC

Also Read: Why India Must Counter China’s High-Altitude Land Grab?

What followed till 16th August 2017 was China constantly alleging India of trying to create trouble. They accused India of trying to disturb the peace and not withdrawing the troops, even after repeated reminders. They also accused India of bullying.

India, however, kept quiet during the whole fiasco, only releasing a statement regarding their stand and position at the Doklam standoff.

On 28 August 2017, India and China finally announced that they had agreed to pull their troops back from the Doklam standoff. The withdrawal was completed on that very day.

On 7 September 2017, many media reports claimed that both nation’s troops have not left the site completely. They were still patrolling the area, simply having moved 150 meters away from their previous position.

On 9 October 2017, China announced that it is ready to maintain peace with India at the frontiers. India reacted in affirmative, the peace was established when Indian Defence Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman’s visited Nathu La.

The issue between the two nations may rise again. Pixabay
The issue between the two nations may rise again. Pixabay

The Doklam issue, for now, is resolved. However, given the history of disputes between India and China, it won’t be a surprise if the issue resurfaces again in near future.