India is all set to show china, its actual place in LAC but this is not the only concern. The main concern is it has now increased the activities in the Indian Ocean. China started its presence in the Indian Ocean. For India, the Indian Ocean region and the countries located in the region including the Maldives are of strategic importance and New Delhi considers them as part of its sphere of influence. However, the satellite images show that India has a major threat developing right there.
According to the news and images provided by the satellite, the Chinese leased Maldivian island of Feydhoo Finolhu for $4 million and started massive construction around there and with 250000 sq. feet this military base is no common, whereas Beijing denied any military action and named the construction of the military base as a natural right being a sovereign nation. The base made by China near the Maldives has the capacity of hosting 10000 troops at a time. Because of all this, it is hard to believe China when it says that they are merely for peacebuilding.
Not just the Base on the island, China has also increased the number of submarines and intelligent ships. Officials say that it is nothing but the projection of power into the Indian Ocean, feeding fears of strategic encirclement.
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This is not the first time, a decade ago China had begun deploying warship off the coast of Somalia, initially Indian analysts believed that China just wants to improve its trade and maintain its security. But now, it took no time for them to think of it as a threat as Beijing has started its border expansion and continuously trying to embed it into the geography of India through the Indian Ocean. China regularly sends research and survey ships and unmanned underwater Vehicles to map different parts of the water body. The presence of the 35th fleet of the Chinese Navy has added to the Indian Woes.
The Indian Navy needs to strategies for distant power projection. It includes employing a plan for a sustained presence in the Western Pacific, where there is a domination of Beijing. To improve the security dynamics in the Pacific, the Indian Navy must then meaningfully leverage logistics support agreements and capitalize on the close naval ties with the USA, Japan, Singapore, Vietnam, and Indonesia.
Although the Indian Navy is capable to match the actions of the Chinese Navy, there are some of the reasons which have restrained the Indian Navy to push the Chinese Navy back to its place. Some of the reasons are constantly decreasing the budget of the navy, gaps in the combat capability like conventional submarines, anti-submarine helicopters, and minesweepers, etc.
The Indian Ocean has the potential to become the new theatre of conflict between India and China. Although both the countries are already engaged in the stand-offs near Ladakh and Sikkim, Maldives could be the next location for a stand-off between the two Asian Giants.