Terming India's moves on Kashmir as "geo-political trickery and unilateralism" riding on the back of "too much confidence" stemming from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's electoral victory, an editorial in China's state-run Global Times has warned that "a nationalist India has no future".
The editorial, titled ‘Unilateral move will incur risks for India’, says: “New Delhi is too reckless on border issues. It keeps taking unilateral actions, and breaking the status quo with an impact on the regional situation.”
India’s actions “challenge surrounding countries’ interests, but it wants these countries to swallow the provocation and accept the new facts made by India.
“New Delhi is much too confident. India’s 2019 general elections consolidated the Modi administration’s power and status,” it said.
The editorial said that it was “highly sensitive” to change “an autonomous region, based on ethnicity or religion, into a centrally administered region”, referring to the creation of the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.
“Kashmir is a disputed area in which three large India-Pakistan wars broke out in the 20th century. Pakistan is mostly impacted by India’s move,” it said, adding it would be “unimaginable if Pakistan does not take strong countermeasures”.
The Global Times is known to carry the views of the ruling Communist Party. The editorial also said that opposition to India’s moves by “Pakistan and Muslims in India-controlled Kashmir may have actual consequences”.
“If the Muslims collectively oppose India’s move, it is hard for India’s system to control the situation. We do not see that India has the political and other resources to fully take over the area.”
The editorial accused the US and the West of “conniving with India” and alleged that “India also thinks China is busy at the trade war and the Belt and Road Initiative, and so it is a good time to act on border issues”.
It said India’s move to revoke the special status of Kashmir “is not a proper strategy for a big power”.
Stressing that India needs a friendly neighbourhood to rise, it said: “Even if India succeeds with its geopolitical trickery and unilateralism, it will amass new hatred. Not to mention that it is risky to play with unilateralism in South Asia.”
Backing China’s close friend Pakistan, it said that “Pakistan is a nuclear power and its state apparatus has loose control over local forces”, an oblique reference to the terrorists who thrive in Pakistan and sneak into India.
It “would be a wiser choice for India not to squeeze its neighbour” Pakistan, it said.
“India might believe that previous efforts to ease bilateral relations failed to settle the violent attacks launched by domestic Islamic extremist groups, and so it decided to try a full-scale tough policy. But one thing is certain: tense India-Pakistan relations will only make a sensitive situation even more complicated.”
Voicing China’s and Pakistan’s stand on Kashmir, it said: “Territorial, ethnic and religious disputes are concentrated in Kashmir. It is not India’s internal territory.
“The United Nations had passed a resolution regarding Kashmir’s status. India’s forceful measure to change the region is unlikely to go smoothly. New and old hatred toward New Delhi’s unilateral decision will plant traps in the road ahead for the nation.
“If New Delhi uses nationalism to support its reckless diplomatic moves, a vicious spiral will be launched. India will have to be increasingly radical.
“A nationalist India has no future. Asia’s general geopolitical pattern will not accept such an India,” it said. “Be a reasonable and friendly major power, and India’s future will be brighter.”
Referring to External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar’s Beijing visit and his meeting with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi, where the Kashmir issue was discussed, the editorial said though the visit was planned ahead, “many regard the visit as urgent and are connecting it with” that of Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi’s visit to China. (IANS)