NEW DELHI: The transfer of military equipment to Islamabad by Beijing is going to increase in the coming months even as Indian troops are engaged in a standoff with the People’s Liberation Army for more than 30 months now.
Intelligence agencies tracking the developments said that while the chances of India being forced to engage in an all-out two front war was unlikely, China’s long term objective is to weaken India financially by directly challenging it at the Eastern border on one hand and arm Pakistan with weapons that will force India to invest more in defensive capabilities on the other.
Post June 2020 when the aggression at Galwan took place, India has been maintaining an unprecedented 1.5 lakh troops along its borders to stop Chinese troops from intruding into its territory.
“The cost and resources required to maintain this huge number is enormous. If this situation had not happened, the money could have been spent in modernizing the troops with better equipment,” a senior official with an intelligence agency who has been monitoring the developments in the region told The Sunday Guardian.
According to intelligence agencies, Beijing and Islamabad are coordinating closely to operate submarines in the Indian Ocean Region in the coming months as a part of what Beijing has termed “submarine diplomacy”. By 2027, Pakistan is likely to have at least eight Chinese built Type 039A submarines (NATO reporting name: Yuan class). The first two of it are likely to be handed over to the Pakistan navy by 2023 end. Pakistan presently has five submarines. If reports are to be believed, the timeline for receiving the 039A submarines has been advanced.
“Beijing plans to make the Pakistan military stronger in the coming years with the sole reason to make things more challenging for India. Inputs suggest that apart from submarines, fighter aircrafts, high end assault rifles, drones and ground and air detection tools are on the list of armaments that Pakistan will be getting in the coming months,” the official added.
Apart from supporting Pakistan in using state backed terror groups to engage Indian troops in the Jammu and Kashmir region, Beijing’s ploy of arming Pakistan with new weapons will automatically force Indian policy makers to invest more in purchasing weapons.
Much of this weaponry will be bought from U.S based companies given the diminishing capabilities of Moscow, which has been among the primary suppliers of weapons to India for ages now. As reported in The Sunday Guardian, Washington is also in the queue of providing weapons to Pakistan in 2023, the budgetary allocation of which has already been decided.