New Delhi's message to China indicates a change in the strategy

DelhiWritten By: Harshil MehtaUpdated: Jun 19, 2020, 08:03 PM IST

File photo. Photograph:(DNA)

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Soon after the 'violent face-off' between India and China, calls for boycotting Chinese products grew louder

India and China had a 'violent face-off' in which 20 Indian Army personnel died in action and 35 Chinese soldiers were killed. Soon calls for boycotting Chinese products grew louder.

Prasar Bharati, India’s public broadcasting agency, posted on Twitter about All India Radio’s Tibetan world service on June 17, 2020. It also mentioned short wave frequency of 9450 kHz, AIR application, and YouTube services for it. “Listen to All India Radio’s Tibetan World Service for authentic news and programs for and from Tibet,” reads the Tweet.  

On the following day, Prasar Bharati tweeted the YouTube link of 10-part series on the "story of River Indus from Tibet to Sea flowing through Ladakh as chronicled in ancient Indian texts.” YouTube channel linked was the official channel of Prasar Bharati Archives. 

This was, perhaps, the nudge from New Delhi to Beijing that it can vociferously raise the issue of Tibet from now onwards.  

BJP MPs, Meenakshi Lekhi and Rahul Kaswan, virtually attended the swearing-in ceremony of Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen on May 20.  They were among the 92 dignitaries from 41 countries. Taiwan, Tibet, Macau, and Hong Kong are the weak-points for China.

Along with increasing proximity with Taiwan and Tibet, India gave a strong message to Chinese companies too. In a couple of days, India reportedly cancelled a series of contracts signed with Chinese companies. 

There were reports that the government has given the contract of building a 5.6 kilometres long tunnel on the Delhi-Meerut RRTS project to China. But on June 18, authorities have clarified that it was “under process” and “yet to be finalised”. On the same day, Indian Railway terminated contract worth Rs 471 crore by citing “poor performance”. 

Indian intelligence agencies have also reportedly asked the government to red-flag the use of 52 mobile applications including TikTok, UC browser, Zoom, SHAREit, and clean master. The Indian government, according to reports, has also prohibited the use of gears manufactured by Chinese companies in BSNL and MTNL. 

It is uncertain what will happen to Indo-China relations after this point. PM Narendra Modi is going to address the nation in the upcoming days. There are speculations that India may increase the excise duties on the Chinese imports or it may cancel existing contracts. India may also give further relief to manufacturing companies to shift their operations from China to India.  

But the intentions of these messages are clear: One, India may raise the issue of Tibet and Taiwan. Two, Chinese companies will lose the market in India.  

(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed above are the personal views of the author and do not reflect the views of ZMCL)