The spiritual leader of Tibet, His Holiness the 17th Karmapa Ugyen Trinley Dorje visited Arunachal Pradesh, which is northeastern state of India, a few days back. He was accompanied by a minister of the Government of India, obviously indicating that the government of India recognizes and respects the position of 17th Karmapa and his importance.
China, which is now known for maintaining abrasive relationship and overbearing attitude towards several of it’s neighbors, objected to the visit of the Tibetan spiritual leader to Arunachal Pradesh, as China claims that Arunachal Pradesh is part of China.
China’s false claims
As in the case of China’s claims in other regions such as South China Sea and Senkaku island, China unjustifiably and unilaterally claims that Arunachal Pradesh in India is southern part of Tibet and belongs to it.
India has repeatedly rejected China’s claims on Arunachal Pradesh and conveyed it’s protest on various occasions but China has persisted with it’s claim that Arunachal Pradesh is part of Tibet. This is totally unacceptable, since Arunachal Pradesh has been part of India ever since India’s independence and much before that and has not been part of Tibet.
In any case, China itself has occupied Tibet forcibly, driving many Tibetans out of Tibet and making them seek asylum in other countries and living as refugees for several decades now. The world conscience is disturbed that violence and force appear to have won as China has been occupying Tibet and it’s aggression has appeared to have paid dividend to it. Apart from the fact that China itself is a occupier of Tibet , it’s claim that Arunachal Pradesh is also a part of Tibet amounts to adding insult to injury.
Massive reception to the Karmapa
His Holiness the 17th Karmapa Ugyen Trinley Dorje’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh was the first to the area in the past 900 years, since the third Karmapa visited it. During his first visit to Arunachal Pradesh , he toured West Kameng district and preached to the Tibetans at Gyuto Monastery at Tenzingang before leaving for Kalaktang. Massive reception was accorded to the 17th Karmapa and he spoke about the need for love and compassion.
In a typical arrogant tone that China is now known for, China has given unsolicited advice to India not to” complicate the boundary question”. China’s foreign ministry’s spokesman said with an air of false innocence that “we should ensure peace and stability of border areas and sound and steady development of bilateral relations serves the common interests of the two sides”
In the last few decades, it appears that China has developed sort of “superiority complex” in dealing with its neighbors and it is giving an impression that it thinks that due to its massive size, population and economy, the neighbouring countries have no alternative other than bowing to the dictates of China and succumbing to it’s pressure.
China’s occupation of Tibet several decades back and many countries meekly accepting China’s aggression in Tibet as a fact of life , appears to have given China confidence that it can have it’s way everywhere and at all times. Such attitude of China has already sent alarming signal among its neighbors, who have started thinking that some concerted efforts have to be made to put China in it’s place, so that China would deal with them in an appropriate manner. One only hopes that China would read the signal properly and reshape its policies which appear to be expansionism in style and substance.
Can be a turning point
Modi government should be congratulated for standing up to China and permitting the visit of 17th Karmapa to Arunachal Pradesh and also sending a minister to accompany 17th Karmapa. This is a bold attempt by government of India to call the bluff of China and emphatically rejecting it’s claim on Arunachal Pradesh.
India’s rebuff to China by encouraging the visit of 17th Karmapa to Arunachal Pradesh can be a turning point.