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On India,China and Rest of World-PART I


I follow world history with considerable interest , especially related to India, China and rest of the world. If you ask me, the current state of world affairs, especially related to these countries is almost similar to the natural order that existed for most part of the human history. For comparison purpose, lets pick the late 15th to 18th centuries and compare it to the present day.

China is as inaccessible today as it was during the 16th and 17th centuries to the foreigners. Trade to Chinese empire could be conducted by the foreigners only at one port under the watchful eyes of empire's administrators.More or less like today where trade is controlled very tightly by the Chinese government. In fact Modern Chinese initiatives like the "One Belt One Road", "Belt and Road Initiative", have a number of things in common with the medieval enterprise and voyage undertaken by the chinese admiral "Zheng He". They both were intended to show Chinese Upmanship and domination over world nations at the expense of the other countries. Any initiative involving different countries becomes notable only when both the parties feel ownership for it. Otherwise, if it is a single party show, it fizzles away with a whimper. No wonder, Zheng He's voyage is well known only in china.

India on the other hand,was a cacophony of multitude of voices controlled loosely by a central political authority, just like today. It was usually open freely for trade in India subject to conditions. Chiefly, trade used to happen with the permission of the local kings and chieftains, as is wont to happen today under the control of the state governments of India. The interesting thing to note here is that just as today, China and India , ran a trade surplus with most of the trading countries. This led to the other countries selling their precious metals, gold and silver to finance trade, which invariably ended up with China and India becoming the richest countries in the world. So how did the situation reverse with riches being drained away from China and India?

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