China Needles, India Responds
Image Credit: DVIDSHUB

China Needles, India Responds


This month, India’s Cabinet Committee on Security approved the purchase of 10 C-17 Globemaster III heavy-lift transport aircraft from the United States for use by the Indian Air Force, in a deal worth $4.1 billion.

The contract, which has an offset obligation of about $1 billion, is the highest single value military contract that New Delhi has entered into with the United States, and will certainly go some way to assuaging any hurt feelings on the US side over its losing out in the race to secure a lucrative contract to supply 126 combat jets to the Indian Air Force.

But the diplomatic benefits aside, the C-17 planes will significantly enhance India’s strategic lift capacity. With a payload capacity of more than 73,600 kilograms, the planes are capable of carrying 188 passengers, have reverse thrust engines for short turnaround, and are equipped with a missile warning system with flares to disengage any incoming missile attack. Until now, the Russian IL-76 ‘Gajraj’ and AN-32 has been the Indian Air Force’s mainstay for transporting men and material.

Combined with the purchase of half a dozen tactical lift C-130J Super Hercules aircraft from the Lockheed Martin stable earlier this year, the Indian Air Force is now well on its way to effectively equipping itself to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

The Air Force, currently the largest beneficiary of India’s rising military budget, is in the middle of shifting its focus from being a purely Pakistan-centric force, to one that will be capable of simultaneously meeting the twin threats posed by an insecure Pakistan and an increasingly belligerent China.

In fiscal 2009-10 alone, for instance, the Air Force spent over $4 billion in capital acquisition, almost three times the amount spent by the Army. And over the next few years, the Air Force budget for new purchases is only likely to rise with plans to buy six new-generation tanker transports, 22 attack helicopters, 12 heavy-lift helicopters and nearly 200 basic trainer aircraft.

But there has been more to the Indian build-up than just hardware acquisition as India undertakes a doctrinal shift in all three forces. The IAF, for example, is currently in the middle of tweaking its ORBAT (Order of Battle). This shift has involved reviving and expanding air bases close to the border with China border, including placing a squadron each of Sukhoi-30 MKIs—currently India’s most advanced fighter jets—at two hitherto small bases at Tezpur in north-east India and Bareilly in the north.

Air Force planners say this is just the beginning. Over the next three years, India has plans to deploy at least a squadron of Sukhois at Nyoma—currently just a basic air strip—about 25 kilometres from the Chinese border in the high altitude desert of Ladakh.

Military analysts say operationalization of the Nyoma airfield will be a major step in India beefing up its defences in the region close to a disputed boundary. Coupled with the Indian Army’s plans to raise, induct and deploy more mountain divisions along the Chinese frontier, India hopes to have a major deterrent against any Chinese aggression.

May 13, 2013 at 12:29

Hi Ajay!! Well said, adding to it, India is the only country in the whole world where a person joins military  voluntarily to safe guard the nation. China and most of the other developed countries forcibly recruit persons in to armed forces. Courage is always there as it was among Indians!! Corruption is a factor but that does not apply during a War period. I am a person who dont like to be on War side at any cost. But the quote says, " A man has the right to live freedomly and he can do the part in attaining it"….

October 3, 2012 at 14:26

Buddhism was born in India and lord Buddha himself was a Hindu prince ……so the ancestors were hindu for all the buddhist… should all buddhist country give their land to india?….fool

October 3, 2012 at 13:33

can china do anything talking about US.All the time . India talks about china in the matter of defense because they are back stabbers.they cannot be trusted after 1962.they invaded a peaceful Buddhist country Tibet.
they have problems with everyone US,Japan,Vietnam,Philippines,s.korea.mangolia,India and many more.
YA they have two great friends N.korea and Pakistan .China is the only peaceful country in the world and all other countries are bullying it ….keeep dreaming

November 30, 2011 at 19:29

No argument with this viewpoint. what do u expect when you have super egos and unbridled jealousies? Where do you think all these imperialistic control freaks come from?

November 30, 2011 at 00:08

Somehow, Digvijay’s comments doesn’t sell. It took only a small Mongol army under Tamerlane to conquer India and rule it for more than 600 years from Kabul to New Delhi. And it similarly took only a small British Expeditionary force to eventually defeat the Indianised Mongol (Moghul) rulers and rule it for another 200 years. And had it not being for Chinese army holding back the Japanese Imperial force, the Japanese would have had swamped all over the weakly British defended India.

October 11, 2011 at 04:27

There is one point that is not under all of yours intrest that both these country wants to maintain there current state of development and opsion of war is very costly and these two countrys are one of most power full economicaly and militarily so war between these country will be fullstop on growth rate of both and there economy will throwen back by dacads and don’t think india will get defeat from chaina so esely I know we are couroupt but when comes to nation we will fight till death and anyone see us as slaves is a fool they must see history of india and anyway no contry tells its secerets may be india can surprise chaina . India is changed we are coroupt but most of us are breliant minded and we can see what is goingon in the world and prepare ourselfs.

July 29, 2011 at 21:09

Indiscriminate purchase by USA citizens of Chinese goods over the years, and wholesale shifting of USA industries into China for manufacturing has had two effects. 1.USA has become poor and their citizens have lost jobs. 2. China has become richer and arrogant and itching for a fight. Sooner, rather than later, you will find that China will start a huge border/sea area fight with some country. It could be Taiwan, Japan, Vietnam, Korea, India. I have a suspicion that it will be against India. Why? India is a big country with a big population, and relatively poor spending on its defence forces and hardware, as well as China had got the better of India in 1962 and may feel that China can repeat it. Moreover, belittling India would make China appear to be much stronger than if it hit Vietnam. However, there is one catch to this, which China ought to take note of. Since 1962, China has not fought any war and has no practical experience of actual fighting for almost half a century. Whereas, India unfortunately had to fight many wars since then, and almost all of them were in the high mountains. It is acknowledge all over the world that when it comes to extreme high mountain warfare, Indians are one of the best forces in the world. Indians have been actually fighting a war at Saichin glacier at above 20,000 feet and above for the last more than 20 years, and have kept almost 10,000 men at that height continuously, summer or winter or high winds. The Indians keep rotating their troops for the glacier duty after every 3 months. So what has happened is that almost every soldier in the Indian army (air force also when they take supplies to that place)has served at that glacier for 3 months, and they have first hand experience of the high mountain warfare. This is one most important difference in the Indian army of today and the Indian army of 1962. In 1962, more Indian army soldiers died in the high altitudes from cold and high altitude sickness and frost bite than from actual Chinese bullets. Indian have learnt from their mistakes, and now Indians have knowledge of how to survive in high mountains. Moreover, Indians have raised 12 specialised mountain divisions since 1962, each consisting of 20,000 soldiers each. All these soldiers are expert mountain climbers, rock climbers, and are generally placed even in peace time above 10,000 feet to stay acclamitised and be ready at very short notice to go even higher up to the border. Hence, if China were to try to repeat 1962, they would find the Indians give a good fight. May be ultimately China may succeed in defeating India, but you will find that China also would suffer extremely high casualties. Both India and China has a large population. You will find that both armies will spare no effort and will find that the casualties would be 1:1, or even comparatively more Chinese casualties as the Chinese would attack and always the army that attacks suffers twice or thrice the casualties than the defending side who are well entrenched. What will China gain. Several hundred thousand Chinese soldiers will die. Which will cause a lot of anger inside Chinese people also, as China has a one child policy since last 20-30 years and most of Chinese now have only one child ( soldier dead means the family is practically wiped out for good). Whereas Indian families even till now have more than one child in families. After this Chinese aggression, you will find that India will suddenly raise its defence spending many times, and become like North Korea or Israel, all the time spending and thinking about war. Straight away, India will stop buying all Chinese goods at once, and India will not spare any effort to hurt China wherever possible. The rest of the free world of democracies would also turn against China and gang up against China, and if they decide to stop buying Chinese goods than China is finished even without firing a bullet. It is too great a price to pay for the Chinese to attack India. But, I still have a feeling that the Chinese will attack India within the next 5 years. Chinese are itching for a fight, just to show that they are the new world’s policeman No.1. The solution is – all the countries which feel threatened by China should immediately come together and form an alliance of military pact. To start with, Japan, India, Vietnam, South Korea, Australia, Phillipines, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia should all come together in military alliance against China. When any country is attacked by China, all of these countries should attack China together. That is the only way that these countries can be safe from Chinese expansionism. Otherwise, China will surely expand its borders and attack every country, one by one.

July 26, 2011 at 07:07

If India is not feeding its poor then who is feeding them? you?

I agree there is lot more to be done as its a huge country and will take its time. But then you should come out of the darkness first and read not only about poverty in India [as its no secret] but rather read how this huge and poor country has come along and how it is changing the world slowly and steady.
If you are a westerner, then let me tell you. These where the same words you guys used to use for China 15 years back and now you know very well what is the situation. Just give us 10 more years. India with 5 trillion economy [nominal] will be much stronger nation. It doesn’t matter how you ordinary arrogant ignorant guy thing about India, but your governments surely do understand how India and its young demographic will change the shape of this world.

The game has just begin in Asia and the world just keep watching.

James Kampilan
July 16, 2011 at 20:32

The West (care of Alexander, the Great of Greece) came to India in ancient times. The US and other Western European democracies should have assisted India in her struggle to create a better future for her people instead of communist China. Red China is increasingly becoming aggressive and is stepping on the toes of her small neighbors in the South China sea. Indians are as industrious and hardworking as the Chinese. Personally, I do not have anything against the Chinese. They are an admirable race. However, with the communists at the helm — I am afraid China will go rogue. The reds are using ultra-nationalism as a tool to consolidate their grip on the Chinese people and are bent on stopping their people’s yearnings for democracy.

India is a democracy and is moving forward to become one of the world’s bastions of freedom and tolerance. I just hope China will move into the same direction.

July 14, 2011 at 00:36

@harry: yeah you are right Chinese factories are robust and fast compared to India…but thats what the are capable of. They have more of low skill work force. Most of these workers are under payed which has led to labor unrest in China. The products which they produce are below standard and are loaded with toxic chemicals, as an example many children have died after drinking toxic milk products in China, Matel has recalled its toys(manufactured in china) because they found that they contained toxic material, yes India is not at par in terms of manufacturing but we are catching up. We have a strong service sector which has been the major cause of our growth story, but thats gonna change soon.

Mohammad Irshad
July 5, 2011 at 21:14

300 million is the current figure. 800 million is an old data.

July 2, 2011 at 04:11

Frank, Are you a crank? More Indians have started and led companies that are part of the Fortune 500 than Chinese. Chinese, particularly Chinese women have these characteristics. Most Chinese wealth is made from low-tech, outsourced sweat-shops where the timing belts are timed to move faster and faster and the chinese workers to an almost robot-like-no-thinking work-aholics. Unable to bear the mental stress and to resign and free themselves in a communist-no-freedom country, many employees of FoxConn – the chinese manufacturer or Apples products, suicided. Some of the 1billion plus Indian people work as servants. They are NOT representative of the whole country

July 1, 2011 at 14:04

@ozivan – look like you lack the basic skill of reading. Paracels Islands were under South Vietnam administration and China set up a sneaky attack. That is the truth. China never had control of anything until that bloody day.

July 1, 2011 at 04:16

@OziVan…hope Wikipedia helps you get started…..Everything does not have to be Greek or Roman!!! Try your local library. sarcasm will not extend your might…the past 200 years of European growth is probably an anomaly. World is just correcting an it. just that the correction has been just too sudden for some.

June 29, 2011 at 03:27

Frank, you just describe perfectly the chinese characters.

Satish A
June 28, 2011 at 23:54

Obviously a person with no idea of India’s history and forgetful of British prescence in China, the Opium wars etc etc. Hopefully the PRC heirachy thinks this way and their war machine. They will be surprised one day when they resort to grab territory in Arunachal Prades. Reccomend you educate yourself and watch the PBS series “The story of India” that is if it is available to you where you are. :-)

June 28, 2011 at 22:42

Frank, John Chan, etc…. how much money are you paid to kiss your masters Communist Party of China (CCP) ????? One Cent for for one comment ……………. So cheap !!!!

June 28, 2011 at 04:35

@James Kalderon : Democracy, our most cherished value came from India to Greece.

Really..!!?? Would be interesting reading if I could get materials about how it started.

Looking forward to your 3rd view.

Thank you

June 28, 2011 at 02:55

We need to spend more time studying Indians and their servant mentalities.

India had always been occupied by other people.

That is why Indians had been trained over the last few thousand years as servants to colonial masters.

Therefore, most of the Indians have servant mentalities.

That is:
1) Envy and Jealous to those who they think are equal to them.
2) Kissing ups to masters.
3) Arrogant and mean to those who Indians perceived to be weaker and poorer.
4) However, if confronted, Indians are selfdom stand the fight. They normally would run away with tails between their legs.

James Kalderon
June 27, 2011 at 04:48

Ozivan, I totally agree with you. India and China do have a love/hate relationship and both their leadership know that any trouble between them can be disastrous for both countries. However, I would like to point out three things:

1. Westerners and Indians are after all Indo-Europeans; in fact we owe the seeds of our civilisation to India. Democracy, our most cherished value came from India to Greece. As a leading power one day, we know instinctively that we can count on India not to destroy the prevailing values that, though not perfect, has ensured peace and prosperity for many people.

2. I know from long discussions with several sources that China has given itself 10 years to push its pawns before its three allies, Pakistan, Burma and North Korea collapse. After 10 years, China itself may become more democratic and it will become impossible then to claim any land. As the US is bankrupt, now is the time to move. It is a calculateed game. The Chinese leadership is very worried of a disintegrated pakistan that can set India free and the Korean unification. They know that if they dont move now, it will be too late afterwards.


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