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The Chinese digital news outlet ‘The Paper’, recently published details of China State Shipbuilding Corporation’s display of a large number of unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs), unmanned surface vessels (USVs), and underwater gliders at the Zhuhai air show. These numbers exceeded those put up at any previous editions of the event that takes place every two years.
Though unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), like Wing Loong 3, were getting all the attention, however, these UUVs and USVs are equally capable. They can undertake reconnaissance, surveillance, mine sweeping, precision strikes, and many such tasks stealthily.
The Chinese UUV and USV journey is not very old. Therefore, their progress in such a short period is impressive if we don’t question their means of acquiring the technology. Compared to this, India has hardly made any progress in producing such surface and sub-surface platforms. In a recent article by a senior retired naval officer on the composition of the future Indian Naval fleet, UUVs and USVs were altogether missing.
Is this lack of understanding or vision for a future war? Is Indian Navy planning for tomorrow’s war with yesterday’s technology? Whatever it may be, if the leadership of the Indian Navy doesn’t buck up and project its modernization requirements to the Government of India, then it will be a deja vu Chinese UAV once again.
One may replace India with their own country, and 95 percent of the time, this analysis would be relevant for that country too:
a student of International Relations can say this with the claim that very few people will have as much knowledge as you have on China and India relations.
Thank you, Nitin. That’s very kind of you.