New Delhi, May 18 (ANI): Arunachal Pradesh Member of Parliament Takam Sanjoy on Saturday urged the Indian Government to be assertive in asking China to stay away from his state.
"We are optimistic that the Indian Government will be very assertive on various issues affecting the two nations. All that we would ask from the Indian Government is that talks are held on the border issue. India should be assertive in placing their points," Sanjoy said.
"The recent incursion by China hasn't been of good design, although with the intervention of the Prime Minister himself with the dialogue process, all we want our PM to clarify, is that no portion of Arunachal Pradesh belongs to China, and they should keep away from India," Sanjoy added.
On an emotional note, he further said: "We are Indians, and no force in the world can separate us, may be the roots are different, but still we are a part of this country," he said.
Commenting on the issue of stapled visas, Sanjoy said: "In connection with the stapled visa, the Government of India should be very clear, and should continue having dialogues with China. Hence, whichever visa is used for other states in the country, the same visas should be used for Arunachal Pradesh, as we are a part of India. No need for India to accept stapled visas."
Sanjoy's comments came on the eve of Chinese Premier Li's visit to India from Sunday. This is Premier Li's first foreign trip since assuming office. He would also visit Pakistan, Germany and Switzerland during the week-long foray.
His statement was also a rejoinder to the Bharatiya Janata Party's demand that the government should insist that Beijing recognise the stapled visa as a valid diplomatic document.
BJP Member of Parliament Kirran Rijju had earlier in the day said: "This visit has a historical significance. We have a great opportunity as well. I have written to our Prime Minister that he should take up two issues with the Chinese premier. First, they should accept the stapled visa that would be issued by the Chinese to the people of Arunachal Pradesh. First, China claimed Arunachal as their part and so there was no need for the people of Arunachal to go to China. Now, that they have agreed to give stapled visas, then, in a way, they are accepting that Arunachal is a part of India. There might be differences over the issue, but they are acknowledging it and issuing the visas. So, I feel that China has softened its stand."
Senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha said India and China can cooperate globally on many issues. We should talk to the Chinese Prime Minister from a position of strength and not from a position of weakness. We are a great nation. China recognises that we are a great nation. And we should keep that in mind."
China and India, despite both being founding members of the BRICS group of developing nations and having increasingly close economic relations, have long looked with suspicion at each other following a brief border war in 1962, which China won.
Both countries were involved in a renewed border standoff on the icy Himalayan mountains which calmed down this month after India agreed to a Chinese demand to demolish a remote army position, a topic discussed when India's foreign minister visited China last week. (ANI)