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India, China wise to tide over incursion: experts

world Updated: Apr 28, 2013 01:06 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis

Both the Chinese government and Sino-Indian experts in Beijing have played down the border dispute between the two countries that soured the diplomatic relations between New Delhi and Beijing in the past few days.

While continuing to deny any incursion by its border troops into Indian territory in the Ladakh region, the foreign ministry on Friday said both countries have the wisdom and capacity to tide over the issue.

Hua said the importance of summoning the Chinese Ambassador to India by the Indian foreign ministry to lodge a protest over the reported incursion should not be blown out of proportion.

Experts on India-China relations agreed with the government that bilateral relations between the two countries should not be held hostage to such incidents.

However, no one seems to be been addressing India’s serious assertion that a platoon of Chinese soldiers have come deep into Indian territory to set up a camp.

Lan Jianxue, former Chinese diplomat who served in New Delhi, described the continuing talks between the two countries like “chewing a bone.”

“Actually in the past several years, from time to time, there were reports about the so-called `line-crossing patrol’. This is all because the long China-India border has never been officially demarcated and both sides have different perceptions of the LAC in the border area. From Chinese perspective, we believe Chinese border forces have acted in strict compliance with relevant agreements between the two countries, observed the LAC and carried out normal patrol on the Chinese side without ever crossing the line,” Lan, who is now with the China Institute of International Studies (CIIS), told Hindustan Times over email.

He added the Indian side has its own understanding and interpretation. That is why both sides keep up friendly consultations to narrow the gap of perception and to eventually arrive at a fair reasonable and mutually acceptable settlement.”

The point, Lan said, was both governments have learned to skillfully deal with unexpected incidents, trying not to let the bilateral relationship be the hostage of the boundary question.

“China-India relations are in good shape and mature enough to focus on the common interest. It is important to create favorable conditions for the bilateral high level communication. As a researcher on China -India Relations, I always argue that it is critical not to let minor floating clouds obscure our common vision and aspirations,” Lan said.

Neither China nor India wants to see the border issues affect overall bilateral ties, and mechanisms and efforts in place are still working, Sun Shihai, an expert on Indian studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told China Daily.

The border dispute is an issue left over from the history of Western colonialism, and both China and India are victims, according to Dong Manyuan, a CIIS researcher told the newspaper.

State-run Xinhua news agency quoted Huang Jing, director of the Center on Asia and Globalisation, a unit of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore, as saying said that the rise of both India and China are fundamentally different from the process of rising for the traditional powers.

While the rise of the world powers were achieved through mass industrialisation, the rise of the two neighboring developing countries has not come with the ability to deploy their military power far beyond their borders, he told a conference in Singapore.

In addition, the rise of the major powers were traditionally characterised by their “having to challenge the existing international order.”

“China and India has not challenged the international order and they try to integrate into the international order,” he said.