Standardisation of Chinese names to six places in Arunachal Pradesh is a “legitimate” action, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lu Kang said.
The state media in Beijing said the move was aimed at reaffirming China’s claim over Arunachal Pradesh, which it calls ‘South Tibet’.
“China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs announced on April 14 that it had standardised in Chinese characters, Tibetan and Roman alphabet the names of six places in ‘South Tibet’, which India calls ‘Arunachal Pradesh’, in accordance with the regulations of the central government,” state-run Global Times reported.
The official names of the six places using the Roman alphabet are Wo’gyainling, Mila Ri, Qoidengarbo Ri, Mainquka, Bumo La and Namkapub Ri.
China’s move comes just days after the Dalai Lama’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh. This was the Dalai Lama’s seventh since the 81-year-old spiritual leader fled from Tibet through Tawang and sought refuge in India.
During the Dalai Lama’s Arunachal Pradesh visit, China had warned India that it will take “necessary measures” to defend its territorial sovereignty and interests.
The Dalai Lama’s activities are against Indian government’s commitment to China, Lu Kang said.
During the Dalai Lama Arunachal Pradesh visit, Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju, who accompanied the Tibetan spiritual leader, had asserted that that Arunachal Pradesh is “an inseparable part of India”.
China had lodged a diplomatic protest with India over the visit and warned that it would have a negative impact on the efforts to resolve the border dispute.
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 asserts that the dispute covers Aksai Chin area which was occupied by China during the 1962 war.
The two sides have so far held 19 rounds of Special Representatives talks to resolve the boundary dispute.
(With inputs from PTI)