Chinese media notes Narendra Modi's growing power, says Beijing will find it difficult at the border

BT Online   New Delhi     Last Updated: April 21, 2017  | 15:39 IST
Chinese media notes Narendra Modi's growing power, says Beijing will find it difficult at the border

Narendra Modi's growing stature as one of the tallest leaders India has ever seen, especially after his party's thumping win in the recently concluded assembly elections, has forced even  China to acknowledge the Indian Prime Minister's power and tightening grip.

A recent article published in Chinese mouthpiece China Daily newspaper admitted that China would have to deal with a bolder India if Modi won the next general elections and dealing with New Delhi on border disputes could become difficult.

The article has come in the backdrop of the BJP's unprecedented victory in just concluded assembly elections that were believed to be a referendum on the Prime Minister's economic policies undertaken in his first half.

"If Modi wins the next election, India's current firm and tough manner is bound to continue. It will be without question good news for the country's own development. Nevertheless, it will likely mean more difficulties in making compromises in rows with other countries," the article said.

The Chinese article went on to note that how Prime Minister Narendra Modi had sent a message to China by celebrating the Indian festival of Diwali in a Sino-India border with soldiers.

"Take the border disputes between Beijing and New Delhi. No silver lining has yet emerged and Modi demonstrated his firm stance over the issue by celebrating Diwali, India's biggest holiday, with soldiers at the Sino-Indian border," the article said.

The Chinese article, however, also hinted that sometimes it would be possible for big decisions such as settlement of border disputes could happen with a hard-line government as such regimes could take decisive step.

"But while seeming inflexible on the surface, hard-liners also have powerful strength in coming to an agreement with others once they make up their mind, given their executive ability and high efficiency. That said, we can still be optimistic in resolving our divergences, including border disputes, with New Delhi during Modi's term as long as both sides are willing," the article said.  

The article pointed out that the Communist leadership in Beijing must give "more consideration" to the Modi government for any major breakthroughs.

"For China, it is also an opportunity to give more consideration over how to make breakthroughs in Beijing-New Delhi relations with a hard-line Indian government," the Chinese article said.

The article said that the BJP's emphatic win in India's most crucial state of Uttar Pradesh has serious implication for Sino-India ties. The observers now have 'started to pay close attention to how the bilateral relationship will develop after Modi tightens his grip on power.'

The article described how Modi's hard-line attitude is embodied in his domestic policies and in his diplomatic logic. "In the international arena, he (Modi) changed India's previous attitude of trying never to offend anyone and started to take a clear stance in controversies among other nations to maximize its own interests," the article said.

The report highlighted how Prime Minister Modi deepened India's ties with several countries though his global diplomacy. It said: "He (Modi) enhanced New Delhi's ties with China and Moscow and applied to be a member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Yet, he also upgraded defense collaboration with the US and Japan, articulated his support for the US re-balance to the Asia-Pacific strategy and Washington's stance on the South China Sea issue."   

The article said that with this win 'it has not only increased Modi's chance to win in India's 2019 general elections, some even predict he is already set for a second term.' "If Modi wins the next election, India's current firm and tough manner is bound to continue," it said.

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