20 April, New Delhi
The Navy chief, Admiral Robin Dhowan has said that India is keeping a close eye on the growing military cooperation between Pakistan and China. In an interview to a New Delhi-based newspaper, he said the navy is keeping the Indian Ocean under tight surveillance .
The navy chief’s comment comes in the wake of Chinese President’s visit to Pakistan. Chinese President Xi Jinping, who arrived in Pakistan today on his first visit, is expected to sign deal for buying eight diesel-electric submarines and strengthening Islamabad’s current fleet of five French submarines.
The visit is also aimed at hammering out 46 billion US dollars deal in projects linking the old allies, a figure that far exceeds US spending in Pakistan.
The infrastructure and energy projects are aimed at establishing a Pakistan-China Economic Corridor between Pakistan’s southern Gwadar port on the Arabian Sea and China’s western Xinjiang region.
The corridor will run through Pakistan’s poor Baluchistan province, long plagued by a separatist insurgency, criminal gangs and Islamist militants.
In his talks with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the Chinese President is also expected to discuss cooperation on Afghanistan and China’s fears that Muslim separatists from Xinjiang are linking up with Pakistani militants.