Saturday, July 24, 2021

China cries foul on Shah’s Arunachal visit, Govt says AP is “integral part”

Nirendra Dev
New Delhi, February 20: Visit of Home Minister Amit Shah to Arunachal Pradesh has run into a major controversy as China – part of its routine stance – has yet again objected to the top BJP leader’s visit to the northeastern state.
“China’s position on the eastern sector of the China-India boundary, or the southern part of China’s Tibet region, is consistent and clear….The Chinese
government has never recognised the so-called ‘Arunachal Pradesh’ and is firmly opposed to the Indian politician’s visit to the southern part of
China’s Tibet region….,” China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said in Beijing on Thursday.
The Indian government has only played down the row.
MEA spokesman Raveesh Kumar said at the regular media briefing: “It’s (Arunachal Pradesh) an integral part of India. Indian leaders routinely travel to the state as they do to any other states of India. Objecting to visit of Indian leaders to a state of India does not stand to reason and understanding of the Indian people”.
He also explained, “Our (Indian) position on Arunachal Pradesh is clear and consistent. Arunachal Pradesh is an integral and inalienable part of
India. Indian leaders routinely travel to the state of Arunachal Pradesh as they do any other states of India”.
Shah is in Arunachal Pradesh to attend the 34th Statehood Day function. Arunachal Pradesh attained full statehood on February 20, 1987.
“At 34th Statehood Day Function of Arunachal Pradesh in Itanagar,” the Home Minister himself said in a tweet.
The India-China border dispute covers 3,488-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC) and both sides are engaged at e very top level engagements to resolve the differences.
From Indian side NSA Ajit Doval is leading the Special Representatives level delegation talks on border issues and from China it is Foreign Minister Wang Yi and both sides have add multiple meettings already.
In 2017, China had objected to the visit of Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama to Arunachal Pradesh.
But the then Union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju – who hails from Arunachal Pradesh – has objected to Beijing’s stance.
“The territorial integrity of Arunachal Pradesh cannot be questioned. The people of the state are upset by some calling it as a disputed territory.
I would like to appeal to Chinese to not rake up this issue,” he said.
In a tweet in the morning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said: “Best wishes to the people of Arunachal Pradesh on their Statehood Day.
This state is synonymous with patriotism and unwavering commitment to national progress. Praying for Arunachal Pradesh’s continuous growth”.