Modi’s informal meeting with Xi Jinping is a positive initiative, feel Mudda panellists, ask PM to look at policy matters with fresh perspective
Amidst growing ties between the two countries, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is visiting China to have informal talks with President Xi Jinping on a variety of issues while he meets him in Wuhan on Friday and Saturday. This is considered to be a major diplomatic move between the two Asian giants.
India and China have in recent weeks come closer beginning with a meeting between NSA Ajit Doval and top Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi in Beijing a few weeks ago. Minister for External Affairs Sushma Swaraj has also attended the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) foreign ministers’ meeting in Beijing. She has also emphasised the need of people of both the countries to learn each other’s language for strengthening ties.
However, India has not supported the ambitious One Belt One Road project because of its reservations against it passing through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
APN chose to debate on the developments in ties between the two countries during its afternoon show Mudda on Wednesday. The participants were defence experts Wing commander Praful Bakshi (retired) and Col Fasi Aahmed, Ashok Goyal, spokesperson of BJP, Onkar Singh, spokesperson of Congress, SK Dutta, expert on international affairs, and Govind Pant Raju, the consulting editor of APN. Anant Tyagi anchored the show.
Participating in the debate BJP spokesperson Ashok Goyal asserted that situation is changing in bilateral ties with China. On certain issues China has been supporting India’s stance.
Onkarnath Singh, spokesperson for the Congress party, asked the government to tread with caution due to past sour experiences. He advised the Indian government to mount high trade projection for achieving its goal.
Wing Commander Bakshi said that although we are meeting China on equal footing we need to behave carefully. We must study Beijing’s objective. He said that only one meeting would not be sufficient for improving ties between the two countries. Colonel Ahmed expressed suspicion and said that nobody knows China’s long term objective.
Dutta, an expert on international affairs, said that Chinese media has been reporting as if China is ready to resolve all outstanding issues with India and adjust its policies accordingly. However, India has not modified its policy on Arunachal issue.
Raju remarked that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to China for an informal meeting with President Xi Jinping is a positive initiative.
—Compiled by MA Kazmi
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