India to host Dalai Lama in Arunachal Pradesh defying China
Dalai Lama will make a religious trip to the Arunachal Pradesh next month, and as a secular democracy, India would not stop him from travelling to any part of the country, say government officials
Indian government officials will meet Dalai Lama, when he visits Arunachal Pradesh even as China warned India against allowing the Tibetan spiritual leader, saying that the move would cause “serious damage” to the bilateral ties and peace in the disputed border region.
According to a Reuters report, Dalai Lama will make a religious trip to the Arunachal Pradesh next month, and as a secular democracy, India would not stop him from travelling to any part of the country.
“China is gravely concerned over information that India has granted permission to the Dalai to visit Arunachal Pradesh,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told the media in Beijing.
China claims Arunachal Pradesh as part of Tibet and routinely objects to any visits by top leaders, officials and diplomats to the area.
In October 2016, China had also objected to similar concerns when India granted permission to the Tibetan spiritual leader to visit Arunachal Pradesh at the invitation of the state government.
China is strongly opposed to the Dalai visiting disputed areas, Geng said. “China’s position on the eastern section of China-India border dispute is consistent and clear. The Dalai clique has long been engaging in anti-China separatist activities and its record on the border question is not that good.”
Dalai Lama has been regarded as a dangerous separatist by China. A visit by the Tibetan spiritual leader would ratchet up tensions at a time when New Delhi is at odds with China on strategic and security issues and unnerved by Beijing's growing ties with arch-rival Pakistan, the Reuters' report added.