India must rein in jingoism: China Daily editorial

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Since last year, the lingering China-India border standoff and New Delhi’s protectionist policies targeting Chinese companies have cast shadows on the relations between the two neighbors.

India must rein in jingoism: China Daily editorial

Recent developments show that rationality and restraint are urgently needed to steer the troubled ties onto more stable terrain.

The ninth China-India corps commander-level meeting was held at the Moldo-Chushul border meeting point on Sunday. According to a joint release made public on Tuesday, the two sides agreed to continue their efforts to restrain their frontline troops and stabilize and control the situation along the Line of Actual Control in the western sector of the China-India border.

Considering that there have been a number of clashes between troops on the border, that the two militaries continue to engage in high-level talks shows there is a shared commitment to prevent the border tensions from spiraling out of control.

Yet the Indian media’s penchant for playing up the border issue shows no sign of abating even at a time when both militaries are trying to stabilize the situation.

On Monday, while the Indian Army tried to play down a skirmish between frontline troops in the eastern sector, saying that it “was resolved by local commanders as per established protocols”, some Indian media outlets deliberately sought to whip up jingoistic fervor by playing up the incident.

In fact, this has become the custom for some Indian media outlets, which fan the flames of nationalism by portraying India as the victim standing up to “Chinese aggression”.

Under such circumstances, it is no surprise that anti-China sentiment in India is running high, providing the background for the several rounds of suppressive measures taken by the Indian government against Chinese companies since last year.

In a move that will do nothing to improve its relations with China, the Indian government has now announced it is permanently banning 59 popular Chinese apps.

This protectionist move is not only unfair for the Chinese companies that provide the apps, it also tarnishes India’s own image and its investment environment. It will eventually do a disservice to India’s global and regional ambition, because only regional and global competition, not protectionism, will help boost India’s competitiveness.

As such, New Delhi needs to be more cool-headed and clear-sighted in its handling of issues relating to China. It should act in accordance with the five-point agreement reached by the foreign ministers of the two countries when they met on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization meeting in Moscow in September last year.

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It is imperative for peace and stability in the region that India does not let its differences with China become disputes.

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Source : Al Jazeera | Photocredit : Google

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