A BJP delegation has conveyed to the Communist Party of China (CPC) leadership that the goodwill China enjoys in India could get affected if Beijing is seen as supporting Pakistan, which the delegation said is fostering and promoting terrorist activities in India. The 11-member high-level BJP delegation led by general secretary Arun Singh also urged China to take measures to increase imports from India so that the $57.86 billion trade deficit could be brought down.
In discussions between the BJP delegation and the CPC leadership during the seven-day visit that included party MPs, the key message was that “each one should respect the other’s concerns, sensitivities and aspirations,” Singh told The Indian Express.
Incidentally, the BJP delegation’s August 26-September 1 visit comes ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to India in October and also in the wake of the Centre’s move to scrap the special status to Jammu and Kashmir state and bifurcate it into two Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh.
Beijing had reacted strongly to the move saying India should avoid “unilateral actions” in J&K that could trigger tensions in the region and maintained that the reorganisation of Ladakh as a UT was “unacceptable”.
On August 16, China had pushed the United Nations Security Council to meet for a closed-door, informal consultation on the situation in J&K. China’s envoy to the UN Zhang Jun said UNSC members were “concerned about the human rights situation there and also it’s the general view of members that parties concerned should refrain from taking any unilateral action that might further aggravate the tension”. India has rebutted the claim.
However, BJP leader Arun Singh said the issue was not raised in meetings with top CPC leaders, but the matter came up in “small meetings”. “We maintained that there is no change in the territory of any country. And the whole purpose of the move was the welfare of the people in the state,” said Singh.
Vijay Chauthaiwale, BJP’s foreign affairs department in charge, who was part of the delegation, said the BJP’s decision to go ahead with this visit despite the developments at the UNSC showed that the ruling party “was keen to have dialogues”.
He told The Indian Express: “There was a good attempt to understand each party’s functioning and structure. Whenever there was a reference to J&K, we put our position clear and they did theirs.”
Another highlight of the visit, Chauthaiwale said, is that BJP’s president Amit Shah had written a letter meant for Chinese President Xi Jinping.
The letter, which was handed over to the CPC leadership, apparently said that there should be more interactions between the two parties.
Singh, who described the visit at the invitation of CPC as “extremely successful”, said that ruling party leaders have suggested agriculture products, pharmaceutical and tourism sectors as the areas where Beijing can work to bring down the huge trade deficit between the two countries.
Apart from Singh and Chauthaiwale, the delegation included Gopal Agarwal, national spokesperson on economic affairs, party MPs Shivkumar Udasi (Karnataka), Suresh Pujari (Odisha), Raksha Khadse (Maharashtra), Vivek Narayan Shejwalkar (Madhya Pradesh), Mahesh Poddar (Rajya Sabha), Chandigarh BJP president Sanjay Tandon, party spokesperson Ashok Goel and Neetu Dabas, secretary of the party’s youth wing BJYM in Delhi. They visited Beijing and Guangzhou.