India-China dispute: Why Arunachal is so important to both of countries?

Until recently, the only tensed border in South Asia was the Indo-Pakistani Kashmir region. Now, except Bangladesh, almost all the international borders of the region are bleeding regularly. Some call the current decade in South Asia a "decade of border disputes." At least 20 people have been killed on the latest Pakistan-Afghanistan border. The Sino-Indian border feud has become almost permanent. It is spreading from one front to another. After Ladakh, all eyes are on the Arunachal border at the moment. China has reclaimed some territory along Bhutan's eastern border, raising concerns in India. That area of ​​Bhutan is adjacent to West Arunachal. India once left these areas to Bhutan and signed an alliance agreement with the country. China is now seeking those areas near Thimpu. But it is impossible for Bhutan to make any concessions to China without India's permission.
India-China dispute: Why Arunachal is so important to both of countries?

Arunachal Province to India similar to  South Tibet to China. In ancient history, Arunachal was part of Tibet. Now Arunachal is completely under the control of India. Naturally, there is no controversy over Arunachal from the Indian side. But the province is also shown on the map of Sky Map of China. A sky Map creates a digital map of a country. China calls Arunachal as ‘Lower Tibet’. Sometimes as ‘Southern Tibet’. According to China, the Dalai Lama once ruled Lower Tibet. Hence, Tibet is now under the control of the Han of China, they also own Arunachal.

India-China dispute: Why Arunachal is so important to both of countries?

The way Arunachal was separated from Tibet

Tibet was relatively independent before the British came to the region. In 1903, Lord Curzon testified that he had sent troops to Tibet. The operation ended the following year, killing about a thousand Tibetan rebels, gaining some privileges and allegiance. The then colonial powers of India wanted to see Tibet as a loyal wall between Russia and themselves. In 1910, Tibet was occupied by the Qing Dynasty of China. Tibet declared independence in 1912-13, taking advantage of the fall of the Qing Dynasty. From this time onwards, border disputes and disputes started in this region. The colonial rulers of India demarcated the 890 km long McMahon Line as the border with Tibet. Despite China's protests, Tibet accepted it through the Shimla Convention of 1914. Arunachal was south of the McMahon Line. Arunachal's accession to India is justified if this line is considered as a border. But China did not comply with McMahon's stone-drawn border at the Shimla Convention. Their representative Evan Chen did not finally sign the convention decision. China did not even consider Tibet as an independent part.

Although the colonial rulers of India annexed Arunachal Province along the McMahon Line to Assam, its Bhutan-adjacent Tawang area continued to be ruled by Tibetans. The governor of Assam never objected. Greater Assam was then known as the ‘Frontier Agency’. Meanwhile, in 1948, the Dalai Lama of Tibet (who is still alive) wrote a letter to the Frontier Agency claiming more territory in Arunachal Province. This means that apart from Tawang, some other areas of Arunachal Province were considered Tibetan. Even if we do not give the details of its later history. According to British sources, India is controlling Arunachal Province. Original India had no cultural connection with this town. Similarly, China also occupied Tibet during the 1951 occupation. Before the occupation, Tibet had little cultural connection with the Han of mainland China.

The cultural uniqueness of Arunachal Province puts China-India in trouble

Arunachal Province is already 63 years old after the British left. A large part of the population is indigenous. They make up about 80 percent of the 14 million population. Tibetans are of 10 percent. The rest are migrants from Assam and Nagaland. Hindus are a minority in religion about 29 percent.The majority of the rest are nature worshipers of nature — some of whom are now becoming Christians. There are about 15 percent Buddhists there. There are about 50 languages. Hindi speaking only 6 percent. The diversity of Arunachal in language, faith and ethnic identity is inconvenient for both China and India. It is difficult for both of them to find the cultural basis for the claim that the town is historically theirs. Lhasa in Tibet can make some such claims.

Arunachal Province Chief Minister Prema Khandu also regularly referred to China's border with her state as the 'Indo-Tibetan border'. Clearly, this is an unbearable attack for China. Prema Khandu is leading the BJP government in Arunachal Pradesh. As a result, there is no way to blame the ruling BJP for his words.

Chinese infrastructure on three sides of Arunachal

After the Sino-Indian war of 1962, there were three major clashes between the two countries till the Ladakh incident on June 15. Two of them have been on the Arunachal border. In 1975, four Assam Rifles soldiers were killed by the People's Liberation Army in the province's western district of Tawang. In August 1978, another incident broke out the tension in the same district. India-China has openly portrayed these clashes as isolated incidents. Demands for ownership of Arunachal were also limited to each other's speeches and statements. The situation has changed radically since the Ladakh chapter. When Amit Shah visited Arunachal a few days ago, China strongly objected. They described the Indian Home Minister's visit as a "violation of sovereignty". The language of the statement says China could resort to aggressive diplomacy with the region at any time. Arunachal Lok Sabha (Parliament) member Tapir Gao thinks so too. He often talks about the movement of Chinese troops and the construction of various infrastructures in the Anjaw district of the region. He also informed the leaders of the country in writing. Although the Indian guards say his words are not true, Gao's claim is not untrue.

In April this year, Chinese troops abducted several civilians from inside Arunachal Provincel, who were later released after a meeting with Indian border guards. This happened because of border violations on the part of China. According to Tao's account, China is building a lot of infrastructure around Arunachal Province. Not only in the west of the state but also in the easternmost Anjaw district and in the northernmost Upper-Subansiri many road-bridges are being built. In other words, strategically, China is creating pressure on Arunachal from the east-north-west. Local troops occasionally told reporters that Chinese troops could be seen within 50 to 60 kilometres of Upper Subansiri. According to MP Gao, there was once an Indian border post in the Maza area of ​​Upper-Subansiri. The whole area is now under Chinese control.

Apart from this, China is laying a 430 km long railway line from Lhasa to Linzhi near Arunachal Pradesh in Tibet. This railway will pass through 120 bridges and 47 tunnels. These ambitious projects of China in its border villages naturally concern India. However, it is almost impossible for China to withdraw troops from the Arunachal border. The bordering county Lhunze has 58 billion worth of minerals. China has already started mining there.

India is also stepping up preparations on the other side of the border India's main problem with Arunachal is that China is signalling that they do not mean the McMahon line. China is quite straightforward. Although the Lazarus lamas agreed, they never agreed with the British on the McMahon line.

In this situation, there is only one option for India to save Arunachal
Confronting China, the world's new military superpower, India has to rely on arms and troops to defend the territory, it has acquired from the British. They are also building infrastructure on the other side of the border. The country's longest bridge over the Assam-Arunachal border has been built to carry 60-ton Arjun and T-72 tanks. It is not difficult to understand that the huge investment in this nine-kilometre long bridge has been made keeping in mind the border situation.

After Ladakh, anti-China nationalist war cry has gained momentum in almost all Indian media. The whole situation has undermined the culture of dialogue. The deep grief that the Indians have felt over the unilateral death of their children in Ladakh has put tremendous pressure on the Sino-Indian front, especially in Arunachal.

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