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Places in Arunachal Pradesh renamed by China have links to Spiritual Leader Dalai Lama and Tibet, says Expert

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Dalai Lama
The 14th Dalai Lama, Wikimedia

New Delhi, April 25, 2017: Recently, China has renamed most of the six places in Arunachal Pradesh, but surprisingly, all these places have some significance related to the Dalai Lama or Tibet, a China expert said on Sunday.

This is only an attempt to show China’s severe displeasure to India for allowing the Dalai Lama to visit the Tawang monastery in Arunachal Pradesh and address religious congregations there, said Srikanth Kondapalli, a professor of Chinese studies at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, mentioned PTI report.

Earlier this week, China given has a new name- Wo’gyainling to Guling Gompa, which is located on the outskirts of Tawang. This is the place where the sixth Dalai Lama was born.

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In Upper Subansiri district, Daporijo town was named Mila Ri. The town is located beside the river Subansiri, which is one of the principal rivers of Arunachal Pradesh as well as a major tributary of the Brahmaputra river.

Prof. Kondapalli said this place has been used by people from Tibet to enter into India and was a corridor that has not seen a military presence from either side for many years.

Challenging India’s claim

Renaming of Mechuka as Mainquka was to question India’s claim on the area as it is strategically located with heavy military presence, said Prof Kondapalli. The Indian Air Force maintains an Advanced Landing Ground there, which is located in West Siang district.

Bumla, the place where the Dalai Lama made his first stopover during his April 4-13 visit to Arunachal Pradesh, has also been renamed by the Chinese as Bumola.

According to the PTI report, Prof. Kondapalli said this area was invaded in 1962 by the Chinese troops who were subsequently pushed back by the Indian Army.

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Namaka Chu area has been renamed as Namkapub Ri, also the area has a huge possibility for hydro-electricity, he added. China is renamed the sixth place as Qoidengarbo Ri area but it is not clear which place in Arunachal Pradesh it refers to.

Besides hydro-electricity, these areas also have a huge potential for agriculture and fisheries. In the 1980s, all these places gained prominence, when numerous Chinese strategic scholars started mentioning about them in their writings, saying these places could solve problems related to electricity as well as vegetation in Tibet, he added.

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These lush areas are capable of producing vast quantities of food. The Chinese scholars mentioned these areas as the “apple of the eye” of the Tibet region, but these are generally dry, said Prof. Kondapalli.

He said this was part of a trend started by China of giving names to their claims — specifically the islands in the South China Sea where it has conflicting claims with South-East Asian countries, mentioned PTI.

Prof. Kondapalli proposed that India can hit back at China by renaming Aksai Chin and Mansarovar areas, which are under Chinese occupation but claimed by India.

– prepared by Ananya Banerjee of NewsGram, Twitter: @bannerjee_ananya

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‘Dalai Lama is a Political Figure under the cloak of Religion, Meeting or Hosting the Dalai Lama is a major offence’ Warns China

In April this year, China had reacted violently to a visit by the Dalai Lama to Tawang, in India’s northeast border state of Arunachal Pradesh, large parts of which is claimed by Beijing.

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Dalai Lama
The 14th Dalai Lama, Wikimedia

Beijing, October 21, 2017 : As US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson prepares to visit India next week, China on Saturday warned that it will be deeply offended if any foreign leader meets with or any country invites the Dalai Lama.

On the sidelines of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, a Chinese Minister dubbed the Tibetan spiritual leader as a “political figure under the cloak of religion”.

“Any country or any organisation or anyone accepting to meet with the Dalai Lama in our view is a major offence to the sentiment of the Chinese people,” said Zhang Yijiong, Executive Vice Minister of the United Front Work Department of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC).

“Also, since they have committed to recognising China as a sole legitimate government representing China, it contravenes their attempt, because it is a serious commitment,” Zhang added.

China accuses the Dalai Lama of stoking unrest and secessionist activities in Tibet from where the spiritual leader fled to India in 1959 after a failed uprising.

The Dalai Lama has urged for more autonomy for Tibet.

Beijing opposes any country or leader keeping in touch with the Dalai Lama.

“I want to make it clear that the 14th Dalai Lama, the living Buddha handed down by history is a political figure under the cloak of religion,” said Zhang.

In February this year, Tillerson had told members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee during his confirmation hearing that he is committed to promoting dialogue on Tibet and receiving the Dalai Lama.

Top US Democrat Nancy Pelosi had visited the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, India, in May, and sought to draw the world’s attention to human rights in Tibet, triggering protests by China.

China resorts to different tactics if any country hosts the Dalai Lama. For instance, Beijing blocked a major highway leading to Mongolia, crippling the economy there after Ulan Bator hosted the leader late last year.

Mongolia later apologised and promised Beijing never to invite the Dalai Lama.

“Officials, in their capacity as officials, attending all foreign-related activities represent their governments. So I hope governments around the world speak and act with caution and give full consideration to their friendship with China and their respect for China’s sovereignty,” Zhang added.

The comments from the Chinese Minister also comes days after Tillersoon described India as a partner in a strategic relationship and said the US would “never have the same relationship with China, a non-democratic society”.

According to reports, last month China refused to fund travel for visiting scholars at University of California, San Diego, apparently in retaliation for inviting the Dalai Lama to be its 2017 commencement speaker.

In April this year, China had reacted violently to a visit by the Dalai Lama to Tawang, in India’s northeast border state of Arunachal Pradesh, large parts of which is claimed by Beijing. (IANS)

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Dalai Lama on Three Day Visit to Manipur

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Dalai Lama
Dalai Lama will be in Manipur on Tuesday. ians

Imphal, October 16: Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama will arrive here on Tuesday on a three-day visit to Manipur, officials said.

This will be his second trip to India’s northeast after his April visit to Arunachal Pradesh.

Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh told IANS on Monday that the government had declared the Dalai Lama a state guest.

“We will extend a warm welcome to him. He will be given all facilities as an honoured guest,” he said.

On Wednesday, the Dalai Lama will be given a public reception at the Convention Centre here. It will be followed by a felicitation programme at the same venue.

The Dalai Lama will interact with members of the public and dignitaries.

The Dalai Lama, who has lived in India in self-imposed exile since fleeing his homeland in 1959, is coming to Manipur at the invitation of the Speaker of the Manipur Assembly.

His Arunachal Pradesh visit had sparked a diplomatic row between India and China.(IANS)

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China pays Tribute to Mahatma Gandhi, Celebrates Gandhi Jayanti in Beijing

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Mahatma Gandhi
Mahatma Gandhi

Beijing, Oct 02: China on Monday celebrated the 148th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, with the India Embassy in Beijing releasing commemorative postage stamps on the Ramayana.

Many Chinese nationals offered flowers to a statue of Gandhi at Beijing’s Chaoyang Park, while school children recited his famous quotes in Mandarin on a nippy overcast day.

“Gandhiji looked forward to a day when a free India and a free China could cooperate in friendship and brotherhood for their own good and for the benefit of Asia and the World,” Wilson Babu, Charge D’Affaires at the Indian embassy, said.

“Leaders of our two countries have been striving to build strong India-China relations based on Gandhiji’s ideals of world peace and respect for all human beings.”

In Shanghai, the Indian Consulate organised a series of events including a memorial lecture, screening of a documentary film and a painting completion for children of the Indian community.

Mahatma Gandhi has become increasingly popular in China, with many Chinese researchers studying his ideology of non-violence.

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was born on October 2, 1869, in Porbandar in Gujarat to Putlibai and Karamchand Gandhi. (IANS)