Writing a tough article in the Global Times (September 26), Liu Zongyi,  Secretary-General of the Research Center for China-South Asia Cooperation at Shanghai Institutes for International Studies, a Visiting Fellow of the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies, Renmin University of China, and Distinguished Fellow of China (Kunming) South Asia & Southeast Asia Institute, commented on a remark in the Hindu of a "senior [Indian] government official" that suggested, "If PLA (People's Liberation Army) comes close, Indian troops can fire." He said, "Such hype only embodies India is being a coward in a lion's skin." The article did not rule out the possibility of India firing the first shot, claiming that nationalist sentiment pervades all facets of Indian society. Liu Zongyi said "When India tends to believe it has some advantages, it would hope to negotiate with China and try to make China concede in talks. This is what is going on for the moment. New Delhi is playing the tactic - using its small leverage to maximize returns, wishing Beijing to make a compromise in the entire region of confrontation. The attempt to occupy more strategic heights in border areas has been India's consistent goal, a tactic through which India tries to nibble into more border areas." Claiming that "India's logistics sector is facing huge challenges, especially as winter approaches", he repeated that "China wants no war and used to see India as a "brother" in developing countries. China has been proactively promoting cooperation with India, both on the bilateral level and in multinational platforms. There was a time when China hoped it could jointly rise with India, in an attempt to realize the rejuvenation of the two ancient civilizations, even the rejuvenation of Asia. But India does not think so. It is trying to shape a new global industrial chain without China. It wants to stand with the US against the rise of China, and has been observing China's emergence from a geopolitical lens, fearing China could one day become the dominant power in Asia." Stating that "India's strategic circle is now taking the border confrontation with China as a weather vane of Asia's future geopolitics. If India wins, it means China's rise can be contained; if India loses, it means China will dominate Asia. The criterion for success or failure is whether India can push Chinese troops back from the frontline, and make China accept the Indian version of the Line of Actual Control (LAC)", he emphasised "India has absolutely no sincerity in resolving border disputes. Its ultimate goal is to make China handle the issues according to India's will." Liu Zongyi asserted that "If China does not fight back, it is likely that conflicts will emerge from time to time on the China-India border, which may even become a new normal. Indian moves are speculative" and that it carefully picks its time for conflicts". He said, "If India keeps such a tactic, China must reevaluate its previous approach and attitude toward India. Time to be tougher to India." 

(Comment: The article is circulating widely inside China.)

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