Beijing: India will have to pay 'dearly' if it continues the 'petty game' of playing the Dalai Lama card, the Chinese media warned the New Delhi government today, just a day after the senseless act of renaming six areas in Arunachal Pradesh.
Referring to allegations that it was "silly for China" not to have names of various countries and inventing them for six places in Arunachal Pradesh, an op-ed article in the state-run Global Times said "these comments are absurd".
"It is time for India to so something serious thinking over why China announces the standerdised names in South Tibet at this time," the article titled 'India playing Dalai card worsens territorial spas with China' said.
The daily said "playing the Dalai Lama card" was never a wise choice for New Delhi.
"If India wants o continue this petty game, it will only end up in playing dearly for it," the daily said.
"South Tibet (Arunachal Pradesh) is historically part of China and name of the places there is part of the local ethnic culture. It is legitimate for the Chinese government to standardize the names of the places," it said.
China claims Arunachal Pradesh as 'South Tibet'.
China on April 9 announced that it has "standardised" official names for the six places in the northern state and termed the provocative move as a "legitimate action".
The Chinese move came a day after Beijing lodged strong protests with India over the Dalai Lama's visit to the frontier state.
Yesterday, India hit out at China for giving Chinese names for the six areas of Arunachal Pradesh, saying assigning indented names to towns of the neighbor does not makes illegal territorial claims legal.
External Affairs Ministry's Spokesman Gopal Baglay also asserted that Arunachal Pradesh is an integral part of India.
Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lu Kang said earlier that Chinese government is conducting the second nationwide survey on geographical names, "an important task to standerdise the geographical names in the languages of ethnic minority groups."
He said that more standerdise names will be announced soon.
"In the next step, we will also step our study of this names in Tibetan ethnic languages making efforts to solve the territorial dispute with India, but over the past decades, India has not increased migration to the disputed area and boosted its military construction there, but it also named Arunachal Pradesh , China's South Tibet, as a formal state of India in 1987."
"Putting the Dalai Lama into its toolbox against China is another trick by New Delhi lately. New Delhi would be too ingenuous to believe that the religion belongs to India simply because Dalai Lama says so," it said.
"India seems to have been trapped in its stubbornness to measure its strength with China. But territorial disputes cannot be settled by comparing which side is stronger or which country has more leverage. Otherwise, there is no need for Beijing to sit down with New Delhi at the negotiating table," it said in an apparent reference to 19 rounds of India-China boundary talks.
The India-China border dispute covers the 3,488 km-long Line of Actual control (LAC). While China claims Arunachal Pradesh as South Tibet, India claims that the disputed land covers Aksai Chin area which was occupied by China during the 1962 war.