India has called upon China to stop developmental activities in areas illegally occupied by Pakistan. The Indian observation came a day after Beijing expressed its “strong disappointment” over Prime Minister Manmohan’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh, and New Delhi, in its reaction, noted that such comments would not help in resolving the border issue.
On Wednesday, the Foreign Office was reacting to Chinese President Hu Jintao’s assurance to Pakistan Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani of help in upgrading the Karakoram highway and building the Neelam-Jhelum hydroelectric project in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK). Foreign Office spokesman Vishnu Prakash noted that Pakistan had been illegally occupying parts of Jammu and Kashmir since 1947, and Beijing was fully aware of India’s position and concerns about Chinese activities in PoK. “We hope that the Chinese side will take a long term view of India-China relations and cease such activities in areas illegally occupied by Pakistan.”
No reaction after President’s visit
Diplomats here wondered why China did not respond when President Pratibha Patil visited Arunachal Pradesh. Nor had it commented on Dr. Singh’s previous visits to the State. They also did not recall India having asked China in the recent past to stop developmental activities in PoK.
External Affairs Minister S. M. Krishna said on Tuesday that the Dalai Lama’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh would go ahead as scheduled.
The former Foreign Minister, Natwar Singh, called upon both countries to make every effort to lower the temperature. He felt that the Prime Minister acted wisely by not joining issue.
The exchange of comments takes place a fortnight before Mr. Krishna is scheduled to interact with his counterparts from China and Russia in Bangalore on the RIC (Russia-India-China) format to improve coordination among the three countries on multilateral fora.