Jayadeva Ranade for India Today.
While China is keeping India engaged in protracted and seemingly stalled talks on military disengagement in Ladakh, the Chinese leadership is investing vast sums in boosting its defence capabilities. This includes upgrading the military infrastructure along the border with India. The plenary sessions (March 4-11, 2021) of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) its version of a parliament and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) its top political advisory body – approved these plans.
Particularly important for India is the 142-page, 70,000-character “14th Five Year Plan (2021-2025) and the Long Range Objectives through the Year 2035 for National Economic and Social Development of the People’s Republic of China”. Its English version is yet to be released. Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed the ‘Long Range Objectives-2035’ and approved its final draft. The document clarifies China’s national strategic intent and identifies core areas of national security and development. It has a definite focus on strategic science and technology programmes in frontier areas. The document details projects that have direct implications for India.
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