India’s ‘offensive defence’ and China’s anxieties

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully tested a new-generation nuclear-capable ‘Agni Prime or Agni P’ missile on Monday. It was a perfect test launch as the new Agni met all the mission objectives with high accuracy.

DRDO has said that Agni P has a range of 1,000 to 2,000 km. Besides, it can be launched from any mobile platform like a rail or road vehicle. With it, Agni P could bring all the major Chinese cities like Wuhan, Chengdu, Guangzhou even capital Beijing within its striking range, with the only exception being Shanghai. Moreover, with a 1,000 km difference between the maxima and the minima of its range, India appears to add to China’s anxieties and apprehensions.

Agni P is the third in the series of missile launches India has conducted in over a week. Three days before it, DRDO successfully test-fired enhanced range version of Pinaka rockets from a Multi-Barrel Rocket Launcher. The Pinaka is at times referred to as a ‘beast’ by the enemy for its firepower.

Then, a day prior to Pinaka, DRDO also tested sub-sonic cruise missile ‘Nirbhay’. It is a terrain-hugging missile making it nearly impossible for enemy radars to detect. Interestingly, Nirbhay is faster than Pakistan’s ‘Babar’ and famous ‘Tomahawk’ of the United States, which are of the type similar to Nirbhay.

Not only weapons, but India is also stepping up forces and infrastructure at the Line of Actual Control with China. India recently moved about 50,000 additional troops to the China LAC, a move considered ‘historic’ by experts. Moreover, ‘the added deployment gives India more options to attack and seize territory in China if necessary in a strategy known as ‘offensive defence”, Bloomberg quoted a senior Indian military official as saying. It is one of those rare occasions in the history of independent India when we are playing mind games with the Chinese with our tactics and strategy complemented by carefully selected words than another way around.

Indian Army has also augmented its reinforcements with helicopters, artillery guns, missiles, etc. As of now, India has about 200,000 troops deployed along the China-LAC.

Additionally, coinciding with the Agni P launch, India inaugurated 63 bridges in the forward areas across eight states and union territories giving a massive boost to border infrastructure. The combined cost of the projects is ₹240 crores.

All these moves come in response to China dragging its feet over the disengagement process at remaining friction points in eastern Ladakh. It is clear that India has stood up to China like never before. Besides, it has brought hope and given courage to many countries and groups who want to resist Chinese bullying and atrocities. With it, a strategic shift in India’s military priorities from Pakistan to China is evident. The change will hinder the Chinese Communist Party’s plans to establish a global ‘Chinese World Order’ in a big way.