New Delhi, April 20: Taking offence to China renaming six places in Arunachal Pradesh, India on Thursday said inventing names of states of a neighbour does not make illegal occupation legal. Reacting to the issue, Spokesperson in the Ministry of External Affairs Gopal Baglay said Arunachal Pradesh is an integral part of India.
He said "renaming or inventing names of states of your neighbour do not make illegal occupation as legal".
China on Wednesday had announced that it has "standardised" official names for six places in the North-eastern state and termed the provocative move as a "legitimate action". The Chinese move came days after Beijing lodged strong protests with India over the Dalai Lama's visit to the frontier state.
The state media in Beijing said the move was aimed at reaffirming China's claim over the state. China claims the state as '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 on Wednesday.
The official names of the six places using the Roman alphabet are Wo'gyainling, Mila Ri, Qoidêngarbo Ri, Mainquka, Bümo La and Namkapub Ri. The India-China border dispute covers the 3,488 km-long Line of Actual Control. 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 talks with Special Representatives to resolve the boundary dispute.