China Looms Large in India's Election

Call it the Giant-Next-Door complex. While the world worries about India and China eating its lunch, India, for its part, keeps a wary eye on China. For India it's a decades-old habit, this anxious concern about its larger, more prosperous neighbor. India came out on the losing side of a border war in the 1960s between the two Asian giants, and many Indians have questioned Chinese motives ever since. Just in the past year, New Delhi has clashed with Beijing over trade issues, banning Chinese toy imports amid allegations of tainted chemicals, and fretted publicly over China's overt support of India's archrival, Pakistan. The Chinese, for their part, have continued to challenge Indian ownership of the northeastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, which the Chinese refer to as South Tibet. In another border dispute, China claims the Siachen glacier, which makes up almost one-third of the disputed state of Kashmir, which Pakistan also claims. Beijing has also repeated protests about India's providing sanctuary to the Dalai Lama.

To continue reading this article you must be a Bloomberg Professional Service Subscriber.