India’s relations with China have a long history. The origins of China’s expansionist and aggressive designs can be traced to its full occupation of Tibet, a vast region in Central Asia, often called the “Roof of the World” and the “Forbidden Land”. It brought China to the very edge of our border.
The decades-old cordiality, which marked the “Hindi-Chini Bhai-Bhai” days and all the impressive talk of Panchsheel (five principles of peaceful co-existence), to which China was also a vocal party during Nehru’s time, were turned into hostility as a result of the sudden invasion of India by China in 1962 and forcible occupation of about 35,000 square km of Indian territory.
Every now and then, the Chinese, officially or unofficially, release maps in a bid to establish their legal right over Indian territory which it seized in 1962 and other areas.
Several rounds of talks have been held, frequent gestures of friendship made, feelers thrown by both countries and false hopes aroused of a settlement of the vital border question. The results of the prolonged discussions, do not mark concrete achievements towards the solution of the boundary question which naturally continues to be the topmost priority from the Indian viewpoint.
Relations with China have also remained soured because of its support to Pakistan in making nuclear weapons. India has often protested about this but the co-operation has continued. China’s hand in the making of the Pakistani nuclear bombs was all too evident but India did not make it into an international issue. Nor has it highlighted the plight of the Tibetan refugees in India. More and more have been crossing the border and settle in India to escape the prosecution in China.
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