Nearly two decades ago in 1998 the then Defense Minister George Fernandes declared that China is India's ''potential threat No. 1.'' India should awaken to the fact that Chinese military activities and alliances in the region had begun to ''encircle'' India. He urged Indians to abandon the ''carelessness and casual attitude'' and to face up to the reality of what China was doing. Mr. Fernandes said India would have to make ''real economic sacrifices,'' presumably in increased military expenditures, if it was to counter the Chinese threat. ''We have become a very soft people, and we must realize that nations are not built through soft options, nor are the country's frontiers secured by a soft line. One has to be willing to live a hard life.''
In 2021 India’s powerful Chief of Defense Staff General Bipin Rawat said “China is the biggest security threat facing India, “much bigger” than Pakistan, and the country is prepared to deal with “any misadventure” on the “land borders or the high seas.” “No doubt” about it. “The threat on the northern borders is much bigger,” he said. We are well prepared for any misadventure. Should they carry out a Galwan-like incident again, they will get it (back) in the same coin as they got last time said Gen Rawat. The Indian armed forces, on their part, remain well-prepared for forward deployment for the second consecutive winter in the high-altitude region, and will not pull back till China agrees to withdraw its troops to their pre-April 2020 positions.
The worrisome for India of China is like Pakistan China had, has and have been supporting non state actors. China was doing shadow war by regrouping, supporting, financing, giving arms and ammunitions to terror groups in North East insurgents. China’s ‘Aid’ to Rebel Groups Sustained Northeast Insurgency and the aid has been covert & has gone through many phases over 50 years. The consequence of the armed insurrection has been large-scale violence and disturbance in the frontier region, and massive loss of lives and depletion of resources by the government in combating the armed groups. According to government sources, Assam Rifles alone is estimated to have lost more than 750 personnel and officers in the battle against insurgency in the region, since Independence.
Few Instances of China: A squad of 18 functionaries from the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) trained insurgents of Manipur for a longer duration in Tibet. China used the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) in Myanmar to train some batches of the Manipur PLA in the 1980s. KIA also trained many batches of the ULFA. 2011 the ULFA Chief of Staff, Paresh Baruah, was already living in Yunnan,. In the same year, two officials of a Chinese intelligence agency stayed for a week at ULFA’s camp in Mynamar’s Taga, and they interacted with leaders from other groups. There were efforts to forge an alliance of the 10 rebel groups that had established camps in the region. Paresh Baruah had told a government-in-exile would be formed, which has not materialised thus far. For the Chinese, these insurgents were ‘eyes and ears’ of the Northeast and Myanmar’s Sagaing Division. When necessary, they would be utilised for subversive activities.” So it is well known fact that insurgents of North-Eastern states have been sheltering for years in Myanmar, as well as the AA (Arakan Army) that has its roots in the Rakhine state of Myanmar, both present security challenges for India. Four of India’s most wanted insurgent leaders were in the southern Chinese city of Kunming to train and source weapons. In addition to being threats to national security they are also irritants that impact India's Act East Policy.
US Senator Larry Pressler during his visit to Kolkata in 2002 was quoted as saying that China was the world's major source of small arms proliferation that was "fuelling conflicts from Morocco to Malaysia." Similarly in 2015, strategic analyst Wasbir Hussain said, "China, in fact, holds the key to the availability of weapons and ammunition among the terror groups in North-East India that is actually keeping insurgency alive in this far-eastern frontier." Anders Corr, a former civilian worker for the United States' military intelligence had said "an object lesson in diplo-terrorism is the leverage over Myanmar and India that China gained by arming the Arakan Army, operating in the corridor from North-East India over Myanmar's Chin and Rakhine states to the Indian Ocean.
Finally one can conclude that Pakistan State policy on India is “bleeding India with thousand cuts.” Likewise China which is a military authoritarian state can’t fight a direct war with India as the military is itself the policy and administration. If the military fights war and if it loses or if it is attacked in numerous positions there will be regime change in China as common Chinese people are fed up with the expansion and economic mess after covid 19 health challenge. So China instead of waging a direct war is opening one day a small fight in Easter Sector Arunachal Pradesh or Sikkim, then in Middle Sector Himachal Pradesh & Uttarakhand and finally in Western Sector Ladakh. But it does not want war keep on irrigating and negotiating with India by time taking. In this way it keeps nationalism at the peak in China and will try to utilize any non state actors who can play against India from North East to Kashmir as if Indian Military is busy on all fronts it can score a point.
As India has a strong leadership with powerful government China’s design are not getting successful. From Rafael’s, Bofors Guns, Smerch and Pinaka rocket systems, M777 light weight howitzers, L-70 air defense systems, 24×7 drone and satellite feeds to keep track of the Chinese build up, Israeli-made unmanned aerial vehicles that relay real-time pictures of the adversary round the clock, Chinooks, Apache, Intelligence, Surveillance, reconnaissance, improvement in infrastructure and more are scaring and stopping any misadventure of China this time? India is not 1962 it is of 2021 any design or any act of China which disturbs India’s land air and water will be seriously given back in the same footing has been understood in Beijing. However the nefarious design of fighting shadow and terror war has to be thought off. Building artificial villages unilaterally and recruiting border villages people for the war and using Pakistan Mountain Soldiers exposes China Military? For now China is a Number one threat of India that is the Chinese Communist Party not the Chinese democratic people…. China should stop meddling in other country land air and water and also stop supporting cross border terror and regimes from Myanmar to Taliban to Hafiz Saeed of Lashkar e Taiba or Jamaat ud Dawaah?