A surge of resentment crests across India as the nation grapples with the death of 20 soldiers following a high-altitude violent face-off along India’s disputed border area. The deadly incident has enraged many Indian protesters, calling for a boycott of Chinese products by shouting “Boycott China! Boycott China!” as a sign of frustration and anger over the devastating border brawl with China. According to The New York Times, “Indian government ministers have called for Chinese restaurants to be closed. Other Indian officials have suddenly put contracts to Chinese companies under review. And crowds of men are now smashing Chinese-made television in the street”.
Across India, people are paying tribute to the soldiers who were killed in lethal fighting with Chinese troops in the Galwan Valley, citing as the first combat fatalities in more than four decades. India and China have a long-standing territorial dispute along their lengthy border inherited from the British colony. India and China have never concurred on their “Line of Actual Control” frontier, which lies strategically important of the Himalayan region. According to Aljazeera reported, “Tensions flare on a fairly regular basis between the two superpowers over their 3,500-kilometer frontier, which has never been properly demarcated”
The confrontation exaggerated following months of roiling tension after several Indian and Chinese soldiers were wounded in a fistfight on the border at Sikkim State in early May. Military experts pointed out the reason sparking the confrontation is that India has been built of new roads and airfields in the most vulnerable areas along the de facto border in Ladakh to narrow the gap of China’s superior infrastructure. This decision to rampant the infrastructure building seems to have irritated Beijing. Based on Chinese spokesman Zhang Shuili said, “The sovereignty of Galwan Valley region has always belonged to China”.
India and China have continued to accuse each other of triggering the current incursion. India said the current confrontation has resulted in an attempt to unilaterally change the status quo by China. Anurag Srivastava, India’s External Affairs Ministry Spokesman said, “While we expected that this would unfold smoothly, the Chinese side departed from the consensus to respect the Line of Actual Control in the Galwan Valley”. However, Beijing has alleged Indian troops of seriously violating the consensus by illegally crossing the borderline and offensively attacking Chinese personnel. Recently, Thousands of troops from the two nations, backed by trucks and artillery, have been engaged in low-intensity scuffles in the Ladakh region since May. A local teacher in the Ladakh region said he saw a line of 100 India Army trucks heading toward the front line “like a caravan of ants”.
The rising tension between the two nuclear-armed neighbors along the border was seen as a “worrying scenario”, as India asserted the commitment not to compromise on integrity and sovereignty of the nation. According to Prime Minister Modi stated, “India wants peace, but if instigated, India at all costs is capable of giving a befitting response”. A large number of Indian and Chinese forces have been involved in an eyeball-to-eyeball situation in Galwan Valley and certain other areas of eastern Ladakh for the last five weeks. Even if the current hostility intensifies and temper fray continues, both sides need to manage and resolve the differences in a peaceful discussion because military fighting and clash could only have adverse repercussions on regional stability, and thus ravage tranquility in the border area.