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India's strong message to China on Arunachal Pradesh: 'Assigning invented names will not alter the reality'

China on Sunday released a fourth list of 30 new names of various places in Arunachal Pradesh amid Beijing’s stepped-up assertions in recent weeks to re-emphasise its claim over the Indian state.

Written By: Ajeet Kumar @Ajeet1994 New Delhi Updated on: April 02, 2024 14:16 IST
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and China's President Xi Jinping attend a BRICS summit meeting in Johan
Image Source : REUTERS Prime Minister Narendra Modi and China's President Xi Jinping attend a BRICS summit meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa, July 27, 2018.

New Delhi: A day after China released a fourth list of 30 new names of various places in Arunachal Pradesh, India on Tuesday reacted sharply and asserted that "assigning invented names will not alter the reality that Arunachal Pradesh". In a statement released by the Spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, Randhir Jaiswal, New Delhi dubbed China's claims "senseless" and affirmed that the Arunachal Pradesh "is, has been, and will always be an integral and inalienable part of India."

"China has persisted with its senseless attempts to rename places in the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. We firmly reject such attempts. Assigning invented names will not alter the reality that Arunachal Pradesh is, has been, and will always be an integral and inalienable part of India," MEA said in a statement.

China "standardised" residential areas, 12 mountains

On March 30, the Chinese Ministry of Civil Affairs published the country’s latest set of “standardised” names for places in Arunachal Pradesh, which China calls Zangnan, and says is part of the Tibetan autonomous region. The renaming covered 11 residential areas, 12 mountains, four rivers, one lake, one mountain pass and a piece of land, all given in Chinese characters, Tibetan and pinyin, the Roman alphabet version of Mandarin Chinese, South China Morning Post reported.

“In accordance with the relevant provisions of the State Council [China’s cabinet] on the management of geographical names, we in conjunction with the relevant departments have standardised some of the geographical names in Zangnan of China,” said the ministry.

China's claim on Arunachal soared after PM Modi's visit 

The recent statements by China to reassert its claims over the state started with Beijing lodging a diplomatic protest with India over Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh, where he dedicated to the nation the Sela Tunnel built at an altitude of 13,000 feet in Arunachal Pradesh. The tunnel will provide all-weather connectivity to strategically located Tawang and is expected to ensure better movement of troops along the frontier region. Chinese Foreign and Defence ministries have issued a flurry of statements to highlight China's claims over the area. 

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on March 23 dismissed China's repeated claims on Arunachal Pradesh as "ludicrous" and that the frontier state was a "natural part of India". "This is not a new issue. I mean, China has laid claim, it has expanded its claim. The claims are ludicrous to begin with and remain ludicrous today," he said in response to a question on the Arunachal issue after delivering a lecture at the prestigious Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS) of the National University of Singapore (NUS).

India will always be an integral part of India: Jaishankar

Later on, Monday, Jaishankar asserted that changing the names of places would not have any effect and reiterated that the northeastern state was, is and will always be an integral part of India. 

"If today I change the name of your house, will it become mine? Arunachal Pradesh was, is and will always be a state of India. Changing names does not have an effect. Our army is deployed there (at the Line of Actual Control," said Jaishankar while addressing a press conference in Gujarat on Monday.

(With inputs from agencies)

Also Read: 'If I change name of your house, will it become mine': Jaishankar on China's claims on Arunachal                

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