IASbhai Daily Editorial Hunt | 22nd Sep 2020

Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass but learning to dance in the rain.– Vivian Greene

Dear Aspirants
IASbhai Editorial Hunt is an initiative to dilute major Editorials of leading Newspapers in India which are most relevant to UPSC preparation –‘THE HINDU, LIVEMINT , INDIAN EXPRESS’ and help millions of readers who find difficulty in answer writing and making notes everyday. Here we choose two editorials on daily basis and analyse them with respect to UPSC MAINS 2020.

EDITORIAL HUNT #149 :“Sino-India Strategic Thoughts | UPSC

Sino-India Strategic Thoughts | UPSC

M.K. Narayanan
Sino-India Strategic Thoughts | UPSC

M.K. Narayanan is a former National Security Adviser and a former Governor of West Bengal


Interpreting the India-China conversations


There is a divergence in views on both sides; India needs a plan to check Beijing’s strategic objectives and ambitions



How to deal with paradoxes and on the prosecution of seemingly contradictory approaches to ensure success in the ongoing Sino-India conversation . Critically examine -(GS 2)


  • Maintaining Status Quo
  • RIC meeting analysis
  • Kautilya vs Sun Tzu


The ground situation in Eastern Ladakh shows little change.

  • MAINTAINING STATUS QUO : India effectively thwarted an attempt by China to alter the status quo and take control of areas on the South Bank of the Pangong Tso.
  • CHINA’S REACTION : Chinese accused the Indian Army of having “undermined the consensus reached” at the diplomatic and military talks.
  • TROOPS MOBILISATION : Several thousand troops of the People’s Liberation Army, in the meantime, remain mobilised across the entire region.



  • STATE OF AFFAIRS : China was attempting to unilaterally alter the status quo, and that while India wanted to peacefully resolve the ongoing military confrontation.

BLAME GAME : China immediately rebutted the charge, blaming India for “violating” existing border agreements, and alleging that India bore responsibility for the recent situation.

  • DISENGAGEMENT : China observed that the most important task for India is to disengage on the ground as soon as possible, and take concrete action to ease the situation.
  • RIC MEETING : On the sidelines of the Russia, India, China Trilateral meeting (RIC) in Moscow the parties had met to try and sort out matters.


  • Defence minister did not mince matters, putting the blame entirely on the PLA.

Chinese “aggressive actions and behaviour” in seeking to “unilaterally alter the status quo” has violated all bilateral agreements .

  • The blunt exchanges between the Defence Ministers did little to assuage ongoing concerns.
  • India and China “needed to find an accommodation”.


  • EXPECTATIONS : What emerged from the talks, however, fell well short of expectations.
  • FIVE POINT CONSENSUS : The ‘Five Point Consensus’ limited itself to urging the two sides to take guidance from “the consensus of their leaders on developing India-China relations”.
  • BOUNDARY AFFAIRS : The remaining points were confined to existing agreements and protocols on China-India boundary affairs and maintain peace and tranquillity.


  • Both countries should avoid any action that could escalate matters.
  • Reiterated the importance of the Special Representative Mechanism to maintain communications.

Calling for the continuance of the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China Border Affairs (WMCC).

  • Work to conclude new Confidence-Building Measures to maintain and enhance border peace and tranquillity.


  • NAMING THE STAND OFF : Neither the Joint Statement specifically or obliquely mentioned a return to “the status quo” or to positions prior to the stand-off.
  • DIVERGENCE OF THOUGHTS : Confirmation of the wide divergence in views existing between the two sides were to be found in the contents of the separate notes circulated.
  • PARALLELS : China, for instance, claimed that the Indian side “does not consider relations to be dependent on the settlement of the boundary question”.
  • CO OPERATION NEEDED : It, thereafter, goes on to pontificate that what China and India need now is cooperation not confrontation, mutual trust and not suspicion.


  • The two Foreign Ministers seem — separately and in their own way .
  • They reflect Kautilya and Sun Tzu ironically.
  • For Sun Tzu, strategic positioning is critical to obtain a strategic advantage.
  • All warfare, according to Sun Tzu is based on deception, and deceiving the opponent.

While Kautilya emphasises the significance of both power and morality.

  • Sun Tzu seeks to subdue the enemy without fighting and resorting to attacking the enemy’s strategy as the best option.


  • TACTICS EMPLOYED : China’s leaders have imbibed and adhered to Sun Tzu’s maxims, and Wang Yi seemed to have employed this tactic.
  • RESTRAINT AND MODERATION : A balanced attitude to the use of force, are recurring themes in the whole conversation, there are clear divergences when it comes to methodologies to be employed.


  • COMPLEX : Understanding Chinese motives are difficult at any time.
  • CHINESE INTENT : Chinese intent -“Community with a shared future for Mankind” has changed  to achieve great power status, still waiting for acknowledgement of its status by other countries.

Unstated , but true . India should accommodate China’s rise, and not cavil at this or pose a challenge to it.

  • CONFRONTATIONAL POLITICS : Increasing resort to confrontational politics, in substance as well as in style, aggravates this situation further.
  • PSYCHOLOGICAL IMPACT : Combined with constant references to superior capabilities and exaggerated respect for their own strengths is Chinese perpetual mental setup.
  • PATIENT DIPLOMACY : Defusing tensions demands patient diplomacy, but it is not a character trait Chinese ever demonstrated.

      IASbhai Windup: 


  • CRAFTING STRATEGY : India needs a carefully drawn-up plan as also an effective strategy to deny Beijing its immediate objectives.
  • CALCULATED RISK : New Delhi should take calculated risk in resistance against Chinese determination to establish regional dominance.
  • REACH OUT : India must reach out to its neighbours to tap alluring prospects of both economic cooperation and military support for the maintenance of peace.
  • MILITARY READINESS : India must be prepared militarily and otherwise to keep a check on China’s burgeoning ambitions.
       SOURCES:   THE HINDU EDITORIAL HUNT | Sino-India Strategic Thoughts | UPSC


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