According to the defence reports, India in view of easing norms to roads and military facilities along its disputed border with China, has also commenced working on building six airports across the region, with an aim to develop air connectivity across the region.
By Sai Nikesh D
If defence sources are to be believed, India has also contested for $8 billion port project with Bangladesh, taking on Chinese Harbour Engineering Company, which was previously the front-runner in the bid.
The sources further say that the, the Sri Lankan government has also batted for India over China, saying, it wants to review all the projects awarded to Chinese firms, including the one regarding sea reclamation development in Colombo that would give Beijing a strategic hold near India.
The growing US-India defence trade is already disturbing China. At this point, India’s latest move across its North-East borders, announcement of its stronger defence ties with Israel, Sri Lanka-sidelining China to shift its projects towards India, will definitely prove as a bitter experience to China.
Ahead of first-ever visit of an Israeli Defence Minister to India later in this month and before the Indian PM’s supposed visit to China, India is gearing up for the improvement of its critical infrastructure in the regions that are sharing borders with China.
A top Indian defence official, on Sunday, said that India is keen on upgrading its defence infrastructure along North-East regions bordering with China.
“We have to make developments there (North-Eastern border with China). Our infrastructure has to improve; our war preparedness has to improve. We are working on that,” said R K Mathur, Defence Secretary, in Agartala on Sunday, according to the sources.
Speaking on the defence deals with China, the official said, “We haven’t signed any defence deal with China yet and there are no such possibilities also.”
He further said that India is increasing its defence ties with Bangladesh and the United States. Stating that Israel is the major defence partner of India, he informed sources that India is procuring Unmanned Air Vehicles from Israel and the order for the same has been already made.
This article was published in The Dollar Business on February 9, 2015.