India's Security Environment: An Overview

Paramilitary policemen practise during a daily training session at the Forbidden City in Beijing February 1, 2010.

China

From a purely defense perspective, China has to be the biggest external threat to India, if not for anything else but Beijing's sheer military superiority. The recent incursions on the Arunachal border and Beijing's continued tacit support to Pakistan as a nuclear ally make China a major headache for India's foreign and defense policy planners.

The Chinese, who have already fought a war over territory in 1962, have made the right noises on economic ties in the past but India's consistent stance on Tibet and its support to the Dalai Lama has always rankled Beijing. Over the past few years, Indian IT companies have entered China but New Delhi continues to be wary of cheap imports from across the border which makes Beijing see red.