India unhappy over Chinese analyst’s article, hopes for stronger ties


New Delhi: Reminding China of the principle of mutual respect for territorial integrity, India Tuesday expressed its unhappiness with an article of a Chinese analyst that spoke about breaking India into 20-30 states. Such views run contrary to the official views of Beijing on deepening ties with New Delhi, it said.

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“The article in question appears to be an expression of individual opinion and does not accord with the officially stated position of China on India-China relations,” external affairs ministry spokesperson Vishnu Prakash told reporters in response to a question on the article by a Chinese strategist.

The spokesperson stressed that China has conveyed to India on several occasions, including at the highest level – most recently by the State Councillor Dai Bingguo during his visit to India last week – its desire to deepen relations with New Delhi.

“The Chinese side has conveyed to us that in approaching India-China relations, China abides by the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence. One of these principles stresses respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty,” the spokesperson said.

“We continue to maintain that opinions and assessment on the state of India-China relations should be expressed after careful judgment based on the long-term interests of building a stable relationship between the two countries,” he said.

Alluding to strategic and cooperative partnership between India and China, the spokesperson stressed that “the pace of exchanges has gained momentum in recent years”.

“Both sides have agreed to continue this momentum, while seeking to resolve outstanding issues, including the boundary question through peaceful dialogue and consultations, and with mutual sensitivity to each other’s concerns,” he said.

In an article written in Chinese, strategic analyst Zhan Lue has contended that Beijing should break up India into 20-30 independent states with the help of friendly countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan.

The publication of the article nearly coincided with the 13th round of India-China border talks that ended in New Delhi Saturday on a positive note, with Beijing stressing on the need to build strategic trust with India and elevating strategic partnership to a new level to include coordination on global issues.

The article was published in the new edition of the website of China International Institute for Strategic Studies (CIISS), an influential think tank that advises the Chinese government on global and strategic issues.

In the article, Zhan suggests that China can give political support to Bangladesh to encourage ethnic Bengalis in India to get rid of the ‘Indian control’ and unite with Bangladesh as one Bengali nation.

If this is not possible, the creation of at least another free Bengali nation state as a friendly neighbour of Bangladesh, would be desirable for the purpose of weakening India’s expansion and threat aimed at forming a ‘unified South Asia,’ the article argues.

The article recommends India’s break-up into 20-30 nation-states like in Europe and contends that if the consciousness of “nationalities” in India could be aroused, social reforms in South Asia can be achieved, the caste system can be eradicated and the region can march along the road of prosperity.