ITANAGAR, Apr 29: Weeks after China’s move to ‘standardise’ the official names of six places in Arunachal Pradesh, the state unit of Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) on Saturday staged a mass protest rally in the state capital.
The rally, which started from Tennis Court at IG Park here, culminated at Raj Bhawan with the BJP submitting of a memorandum to Governor PB Acharya.
China had announced on April 19 that it had ‘standardised’ the official names for six places in the state and termed the provocative move a ‘legitimate action’. This happened a few days after Beijing lodged strong protests with India over the Dalai Lama’s visit to the state.
Hundreds of BJP workers led by party president Tapir Gao took to the streets early Saturday morning with placards and posters and shouted slogans against the Chinese government and its president.
The protesters also burnt an effigy of Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Taking strong exception to the issue, Gao reiterated that Arunachal Pradesh will always remain an integral part of India.
“We are Indians by birth and have nothing to do with the Chinese. Arunachal has never been a part of China at any point of time in history and in the living memory of people in the state,” he said.
Neither India nor Arunachal Pradesh shared a border with China but state sharing border with Tibet, he added.
“Moreover, China has no locus standi whatsoever for claiming Arunachal. The renaming of places in Arunachal by the Chinese is a transgression of sovereignty and territorial integrity of India which we strongly condemn,” Gao added.
Various students’ organisations such as All Arunachal Pradesh Students’ Union and All Bogong Students Union (E) had earlier registered their protest in Itanagar, Tawang and Pasighat over the Chinese claim.
China, on the other hand, has maintained that its renaming the places in Arunachal is legitimate.