To borrow a line from the nuns in that old musical, how do you solve a problem like China?

It isn’t a will o’ the wisp that’ll go away; it isn’t a clown, though it might think the rest of us are. It is a worry for the world and a headache for India.

The Economist, which is now a weekly must-read for trend analysts everywhere, ran a special survey recently on ‘The Dangers of a Rising China’. Several Asia-watchers have written volumes full of anxiety. One by Martin Jacques, titled ‘When China Rules the World’, declares in its subtitle: The End of the Western World and the Birth of a New Global Order. China’s influence, says Jacques, will extend well beyond the economic sphere. It will have social, cultural and political repercussions.

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Some of us still dream of Chindia, an approaching phase of history when China and India will not only be the biggest powers on earth, they will partner each other in running the world, which will regard them as one glorious Asian entity

Sino-Indian relations are back in public debate after the New York Times report on Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers in Gilgit-Baltistan, visa denial to Lt. Gen. B.S. Jaswal, General Officer Commanding in Chief (GOC-in-C), Northern Command, and on top of earlier Chinese transgressions like separate paper visas for Jammu and Kashmir residents. Were not the bilateral relations on the upswing since the handshake between Rajiv Gandhi and Deng Xiaoping in 1988?

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