The relationship between India and china has been for the most of its part controversial. Mutual suspicion reigns very high among both the neighbours.
Political engagement began between New Delhi and Beijing in 1950’s. After a brief period of the ‘Panchsheel climate’, relationship between the two was all set to hit its lowest point. In the late 1950’s disputes regarding maps depicting border areas began, finally leading to war in 1961 in which India suffered a humiliating defeat. Relationship between the two practically froze for 20 odd years.
Things began to look up only in 1980’s. The heat generated during and after the war started to cool off. Political travel began and talks covering varied areas started.
Today, things look much brighter between them than it had ever before. Bilateral trade between the two Asian giants has increased enormously. Both the nations are cooperating in areas like science and technology, environment, culture, international business, etc.
But still, the border dispute is not resolved yet. Also, there is a gap in perception and lack of understanding between the two sides about their goals and vision for future. Both are worried about each other’s intention. Perhaps India is much more worried than China is!
Nevertheless, today, there are lot of positive elements in our relations which were missing few decades ago.
Both are discussing the border issue in a remarkably accommodative manner. I believe that India has to build up political consensus on the border adjustment issue.
There is little doubt that the war of 1961 was an act of aggression by china against India. But what was done five decades ago cannot be undone now. There must be a practical solution based on the current realities. Border dispute should be resolved as soon as possible.