‘We’re not Chinese, we’re hardcore Indians,’ Arunachalis speak against Chinese claim
Itanagar, April 25: On Monday, Arunachalis (as the people of Arunachal Pradesh are known), came out in the open to tell the world that they are 'hardcore and patriotic Indians' and were 'never part of China'.
A protest rally was hosted by the All Arunachal Pradesh Students' Union in the capital city, Itanagar, to send out a clear message to China, which claims Arunachal Pradesh, the border state of India, as its own.
In recent times, India and China saw some heated exchange over Arunachal Pradesh after the former gave a red carpet welcome to the Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama in the border state.
Thereafter, China announced that it had 'standardised' official names for six places in the state and termed the move a 'legitimate action'. India, on its part, opposed the latest Chinese action of renaming places.
The Itanagar protest against China saw a huge crowd, in spite of heavy downpour in the city on Monday. Protesters shouted slogans like 'Khoon bhi denge jaan bhi denge, desh ki mitti kabhi nahin denge (We will give our blood and life as well but in no way give away our land) and Bharat Mata ki jai'.
The agitating crowd was also seen holding placards with anti-China and pro-India messages. The protesters also burnt an effigy of Chinese president Xi Jinping.
Hawa Bagang, the president of the students' union, addressed the media and condemned Beijing's move to rename six places in the state. He said, "China is unnecessarily interfering in the internal affairs of a sovereign state such as India."
"We are not Chinese, nor were we ever. The Arunachalis are patriotic people and hardcore Indians. We speak Hindi here, not Chinese," added Bagang. The protesters also demanded that the Centre should act tough on the issue.
"The Centre should take China's claim seriously and come out with an early solution. The state government should also be vocal on this subject," said Bagang.