India reacts to China’s fresh claim over Arunachal Pradesh, says changing names does not have an impact

India and China exchange barbs over Arunachal Pradesh
India reacts to China’s fresh claim over Arunachal Pradesh. Photo Courtesy:  Facebook/Jaishankar

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar has refused to weigh in on China’s renewed claim over the northeastern state of Arunachal Pradesh, amid the bitter relationship between the two Asian giants.

Speaking to the reporters, Jaishankar said, “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.”

Jaishankar’s response comes after China referred to Arunachal Pradesh as ‘Zangnan’ and claimed it does not belong to India.

The Chinese Defence Minister said it “never acknowledges and firmly opposes” the existence of “so-called Arunachal Pradesh illegally established in India”.

Rejecting China’s claims, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal said, “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.”

China objects to Modi’s Arunachal Pradesh visit

Last month, China lodged a complaint with New Delhi over Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh.

India had outrightly rejected China’s objection to Modi’s visit to the northeastern state.

India had maintained Arunachal Pradesh “was, is, and will” remain as an “integral and inalienable part” of the country.

India-China dispute

India and China have a long running dispute over territorial boundaries, especially over Arunachal Pradesh and parts of Ladakh under Jammu and Kashmir.

In 1962 China and India fought a brief war over Aksai Chin (Ladakh region) and Arunachal Pradesh, but in 1993 and 1996 the two countries signed agreements to respect the Line of Actual Control.

The 4,057 km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC) is the effective border between India and People’s Republic of China (PRC).