No. 3

HIMALAYAS PLUS

July-August 2023



Dear Friends,

Warm greetings from the Centre of Excellence for Himalayan Studies (CHS), Shiv Nadar Institution of Eminence, Delhi NCR! 

PUBLICATIONS 

CHS publications are the mainstay of our centre’s research agenda, and our output will be of interest to scholars, policymakers and general public. We have three types of publications – Commentary, Issue Brief, and Occasional Paper – that cater to diverse readership and their reading choices. 

In our Commentaries section, Mr. Rustam Ali Seerat, a research scholar at South Asia University, New Delhi, analyzed developments taking place in northern regions of Afghanistan post the takeover by Taliban in 2021 covering issues of demographic change and the establishment of religious schools. Dr. Devendra Kumar, Associate Fellow, CHS, wrote about the visit of Chinese People's Consultative Conference's Chairman, Wang Huning to Tibet covering the Party-state's attempts to balance ethnic unity and economic development as well as the work of the United Front Work Department.

In our inaugural Issue Brief in July, Dr. Abu Zafar, Research Coordinator, Centre for India West Asia Dialogue, New Delhi, delved into the silence of West Asian countries on the persecutions of Uyghurs by the Chinese Party-state in Xinjiang. 

In the Centre’s first Occasional Paper, Dr. Diki Sherpa explores the history of Kalimpong, as a centre for covert operations/espionage, and its role in geopolitical tensions between India, Tibet and China.

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IN THE MEDIA

CHS Distinguished Fellow, Mr. Claude Arpi wrote for Rediff, on the spiritual and ecological importance of Yangtse in Arunachal Pradesh, which had witnessed a skirmish between Indian and Chinese troops in late 2022.

Dr. Jabin T. Jacob penned two pieces for the Deccan Herald. In the first, he looked at theChinese claim of having achieved a 'consensus' with India, on the sidelines of the G20 summit at Bali in 2022, on restoring bilateral relations. A second piece counters the consistent Chinese assertion of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries, by focussing on a recent conference in Pakistan on the tenth anniversary of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor.

On the podcast, Uncensored, Dr. Jacob provided a round-up on the hits and misses in India's China policy - covering the LAC, the state of China Studies, government accountability, the US factor and what India needs to do to improve matters.. He was also part of the Newslaundry’s ‘Hafta’ Podcast, discussing the (lack of) Chinese influence in India, and the shortcomings of India’s own attempts to influence views abroad.

Dr Jacob was quoted in The Print twice in July – on 3 July on India hosting the 1st virtual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, and on 13 July, regarding the worsening local government debt in China.

Dr. Anand Parappadi Krishnan, CHS Fellow, was quoted in two data stories on WION – on theemployment crisis in China and the phenomenon of ‘Curse of 35’, and on China’s higher female labour force participation compared to India.

Associate Fellow, Dr. Devendra Kumar, penned a piece for Politeia Research Foundation on why – unlike previous occasions – China was not taking any serious initiatives in resolving the persisting crisis at Line of Actual Control with India, post-Galwan, in the summer of 2020.

FACULTY UPDATE

CHS Non-Resident Senior Fellow, Prof. Kaveri Gill, was part of a Conference on Science, Compassion and Universal Ethics, in August, as part of the two-week long Golden Jubilee celebrations of Lamdon School in Leh, Ladakh.

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Distinguished Fellow, Mr. Claude Arpi gave a series of lectures in a Tibetology course organized by the Major Bob Khathing Institute of Himalayan Studies and the Gajraj Corps in Arunachal Pradesh. The course is meant to provide a deeper insight into the historical background on India-Tibet-China relations, to junior Army officers. In this trip, he also visited a few forward posts of the Indian Army in the Tawang and Yangtse sectors.

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CHS Director, Dr. Jabin T. Jacob, made a presentation on ‘How is Chinese Expansionism Secured by the One China Policy?’, in a seminar on Weaponisation of the One China Policy, organized by Forum for Non-Violent Alternatives, in Delhi on 1 August. 

 In July, Dr. Jacob was part of a delegation of the Centre for Social and Economic Progress, Delhi, that visited Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka to disseminate the report, How China Engages South Asia: Themes, Partners and Tools, of which he is a co-editor. 

Associate Fellow, Dr. Devendra Kumar participated at the 3rd Tsinghua Area Studies Forum at Tsinghua University, Beijing, on 3-5 July, where he made a presentation on ‘Multilateralism and Geopolitics: A Case of AIIB in South Asia’. He also spoke on the Changing Profiles of Leadership in the Tibet Autonomous Region in the New Era, at the ICS Wednesday Seminar on 26 July. The presentation is available here.

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You can remain up to date with our publications, events, and activities either through our website, Twitter (@Himalayas_SNU), Facebook, and/or LinkedIn. We welcome any feedback as well as contributions from those working on the wider Himalayas on the four broad themes of research at CHS – Borders and Identity, Economy, Environment, and Geopolitics. Please get in touch with us at chs.shss@snu.edu.in