India-China dispute? Says who

A section of media in India and abroad have hyped the border dispute between India and China these days.

The Wall Street Journal reported Oct. 23 a “brewing discord between two giant, ambitious nations” and that some “two-dozen Chinese soldiers converged earlier this year on a family of [Indian] nomads.” The article continued to suggest high tensions between China and India, and the United States is being wooed by the two Asian superpowers.

In the Times of India, the dispute was portrayed as a “mini-war of words” and it harkened back to the 1962 border war. There is a longstanding border dispute in the area but how the governments are looking to resolve it is worth study.

Prime ministers of the two countries are meeting in Thailand for the South East Asian Countries confab. Both leaders have stressed the cordiality of relations and sincere desire to settle the boundary issue peacefully and in a spirit of friendship.

The border issue has been ill-defined and a problem between the two countries for many years. In certain regions of the Himalayan heights the news of the border “violations” and “trespass” are meaningless.

China is blamed for constructing a dam in the upper reaches of the river Brahmaputra that flows most of its later course in India. India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has clarified several times that no dam is or is likely to be constructed on Brahmaputra.

Communist Party of India’s weekly newspaper said in two separate articles that the border “dispute” is being blown up as “imperialist inspired media efforts.” In another article, arm sales have been characterized as the motive behind the campaign.

The Indian government has said India and China are not rivals, but both are friendly developing countries, whose trade relations have shown constant and phenomenal growth over years.

India’s Minister of State for External Affairs Parneet Kaur, on an official visit to New York, said, “India is not intimidated by China and the border dispute between the two countries could be settled by talks.” Noting that the media was overplaying the recent tension between the two neighbors, she added, “There has been a lot of media hype created over what the Chinese are doing.” She denied that “Indian leaders were appeasing China,” and added, “we have a good enough relationship to be able to sort this out across the table.”




R.K. Sharma
R.K. Sharma

Rama Kant Sharma was born into a Communist family from Punjab, India in 1933. As a young boy, he became active in politics in 1944 as a student freedom fighter against British colonial rule. Sharma joined the Communist Party of India in 1949 and worked for it as a student until 1954. Sharma was a biology teacher and trade union organiser of an 18,000 strong teachers association in Delhi from 1954 until 1963.

Sharma went to Ethiopia in 1963, with his wife, also a teacher, where the two of them taught in that country.

Later he graduated in medicine from Calcutta University, and returned to Delhi to serve working families as a medical practitioner,while working as a voluntary medical doctor to the Communist Party of India's office until 1996. Sharma has run for office (parliament) as a Communist candidate.

Sharma was a founder and organizer of the Indian affiliate of International Physicians For Prevention of Nuclear War. After all four children, all of whom are medical doctors, immigrated to the United States, Sharma and his wife also immigrated to the United States.

Sharma is currently active in U.S. progressive politics and a member of Physicians For Social Responsibility.