Itanagar- The Indian Air Force (IAF) chief has warned that China is making several strategic moves in the south Asian region in order to “contain India”. Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha also said communalism and sectarianism were just as much threats to India’s security as jihadi terrorism.
During an address at the Center for Air Power Studies (CAPS) on Monday, the IAF chief said China’s investments in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and other south Asian nations were “strategic moves” to contain India.
Raha, however, did not deliver the address personally and his speech was read out by Air Marshal KK Nohwar (Retd), according to an English national daily.
“The world’s highest airport at Daocheng Yading , the highest railway line in Tibet, the development of Gwadar port and the economic corridor through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir being developed right up to the Indian border and increasing economic ties with Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar are strategic moves by China to contain India,” he said in his address.
The IAF chief also brought up the controversial issues of stapled visas given by China to residents of Arunachal Pradesh and border skirmishes between the neighbours, claiming they went against the principles of the Panchsheel agreement.
“Incidents of border standoff in the North, issuance of paper visa to residents of Arunachal Pradesh and claiming of Aksai Chin and part of Arunachal as part of China have diluted the agreement of five principles, Panchsheel, signed way back in 1954,” said Raha.
Raha also touched upon issues of communalism in the country, citing it as an internal threat.
“It is becoming increasingly difficult to separate internal threats to India’s security from external threats. The threat to India’s internal security ranges from communalism to sectarianism to Jihadi terrorism,” he said.
The air chief said Maoism has been the “single biggest threat to India’s internal security”