Maxim Shemetov / Reuters
Pakistan is only incidental in the broader vision that Moscow has for itself.
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A letter from Kerala's Agriculture minister V.S. Sunil Kumar to the Central government highlights apprehensions about the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), a trade deal that will bind India to Asia Pacific's manufacturing and agricultural powerhouses. No one, least of all the states who bear the actual consequences, has a clue about what is being negotiated, the tariff lines being conceded, the products in the negative list, and what sectors and states will be affected.
Which South Asia do you live in? The one which offers world-class metros and malls, super-speciality hospitals, gourmet eateries and designer homes where servants make your meals, drive your car or clean your mess? Or do you live in the South Asia where sanitation, water and electricity are a luxury, where filth, ignorance and violence means death comes early and more frequently from illness, poverty and natural disasters? Statistically, the latter is more likely.
For now India doesn't have the economic or military might to counter China. However what it has is its geopolitical importance in Asia, which both the US and China are trying to leverage. India should use this to straighten its relationship with China.