First, it was Hambantota proton Sri Lanka which went to the Chinese. Currently, an ambitious programme to develop colombo port has been given to another Chinese consortium.
After Hambantota went to the Chinese and Indian strategists saw it as part of Beijing's "string of pearls" strategy, it was believed that India would be more proactive when it came to strategic projects in its neighbourhood, where more than mere economic interests are at stake.
The latest ADB-funded Colombo Port project, saw no Indian entities participating in the bids, leaving the Chinese consortium as the sole bidder for the terminal.
After expansion, the Colombo port (which will become bigger than most Indian ports combined ) will probably handle the bulk of Indian shipping traffic, making it very important for India. Sri Lanka is positioning itself as a South Asia hub, which would work very well for India as it currently uses either Singapore or Dubai.
While it is a fact that China, with its deep pockets and state-owned enterprises has been increasing its footprint in South Asia, but the question is whether India can take the challenge?
China to build another port in Sri Lanka [ Times of India, 17 September 2010]