Last week, two separate incidents reported from Bharat and Nepal depict how Chinese intrigue in Bharatiya subcontinent is on the increase in the aftermath of Galawan valley stand-off between Bharat and China. In Nepal, a journalist who had exposed Chinese incursion on Nepal’s territory was found dead under suspicious circumstances whereas in Bharat, a Chinese national was apprehended after a hawala racket to tune of 1000 crore was unearthed by sleuths.
Balaram Baniya, a 50-year-old Nepali journalist’s body was found at the banks of Bagmati River near the hydropower project area in Mandu on 12th August, as reported by Himalayan Times. He was missing for two days. Balaram, who was a well known journalist and editor, was also former central secretary of Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ). He recently came into limelight when he wrote about how China has encroached into Nepali territory and one whole village Rui which used to be Nepal’s sovereign territory is now under Chinese occupation. In a tweet dated 24 June, he highlighted areas in 7 different district where China has infiltrated into Nepal’s territory.
चीनतर्फ पनि ७ जिल्लामा सीमा अतिक्रमण https://t.co/DGZnIG5BOH
— Balaram baniya (@baniyabalaram) June 24, 2020
As reported in his article published in Ekantipur in dated 24 June 2020, he wrote that
Nepal’s long-running border dispute with its northern neighbor China has not been resolved. According to government officials, about 1,456 ropanis in five Himalayan districts and one Nepali village each in Gorkha and Darchula have been encroached by China. The report of the constitutional and government bodies has mentioned that 99 ropanis of the northern part of Dolakha and 64 hectares (1257.60 ropanis) of Humla, Sindhupalchowk, Sankhuwasabha and Rasuwa have been under Chinese encroachment for years. The report did not disclose the extent of encroachment of Nepali villages in Gorkha and Darchula districts on the Chinese side. There have been no border talks with China since 2005. Officials of the Department of Surveying and Mapping said that the border dispute remained unresolved as Nepal abruptly postponed the talks scheduled for 2012.
After his expose, a lot of media attention came on Chinese incursions into Nepali territory. The alarmed Communists government went on the back-foot after he exposed its ineptitude in dealing with decades-old Chinese incursions. FNJ, in its condolence article, expressed doubts regarding circumstances of his death in following words-
FNJ demands the government to conduct a thorough investigation into the mysterious demise of Bania and make the facts public. FNJ pays heartfelt tribute to the late Baniyan for his invaluable contribution to the cause of democracy, human rights, rule of law, press freedom, journalist security and civil rights through the field of journalism.
Balaram’s untimely death under mysterious circumstance within a month of his expose of Chinese incursions, point out serious lapses in safety and security of journalists and freedom of Nepali media under the Communist government.
Meanwhile in Bharat, a Chinese national was apprehended over alleged financial irregularities. While investigating the details, the officers came to know that the accused was no ordinary swindler but was a dedicated spy who was targeting Tibetan Government in Exile based in Dharamshala, Himachal. The accused was carrying two AADHAR cards and fake Bharatiya passport as well. He had also managed to marry a Manipuri girl in order to fit in as a Bharatiya national.
As reported in Times of India, Charlie Peng aka Lou Sang came to Bharat illegally through Nepal border in 2014. Once inside, he began to work on the dual tasks of flushing huge funds in and out of Bharat illegally and also infiltrating Tibetan diaspora and government-in-exile which has been a thorn in the side of communist China since 1950s.
In time, his illegal financial activities reached a whopping 1000 crore point by creating shell firms which paved way for fictitious financial transactions in favour of Chinese entities. In 2018, he was arrested for same but let off after cops could not establish any evidence against him. After coming out on bail, Peng went right back to his nefarious activities before he was caught again on 12 Aug. By this time he was infusing cash of around Rs 3 crore through hawala on daily basis with the help of bank employees in Bandhan Bank and ICICI bank. Several chartered accountants and bank officials were also suspected to be involved in his nexus.
In an unrelated yet similar incident, another Chinese national Yah Hao, was caught from Hyderabad for running a betting syndicate. There has a spate of suicides in the region related to illegal betting activities which led to police investigating the nexus between Chinese and local criminals running illegal online gaming/betting syndicate through Telegram channels.
In view of all these incidents in quick succession, the Chinese seem to be using all tactics available in ‘Art of War’ to enhance their presence in Bharatiya subcontinent while jeopardizing integrity of local democratic governments. The fight for supremacy between Bharat & China is likely to be long and multi-pronged in light of these events.
Did you find this article useful? We’re a non-profit. Make a donation and help pay for our journalism.