China and India are on the cusp of becoming two of the world's top three economies. Various economic surveys have predicted that while China can emerge as the world's leading economy, India has the potential to become the third-largest economy by 2020.

Sino-Indian relations have always bordered on mistrust because of outstanding border disputes, an unfortunate historical legacy. India, after the debacle of a brief war with China in 1962, has been cautious when dealing with its neighbor. India has always approached the "China threat" with timidity.

One of the reasons for underplaying the threat is probably a lack of military preparedness. It certainly didn't help that a former Indian defense minister, in a government led by the Congress party, brought the purchase of all critical military equipment to a virtual halt, as he was afraid of sullying his image. Previously, India had been rocked by scandals — large-scale kickbacks involving important players at the time of defense purchases.