May 23, 2010 4:05:52 pm
Suspicion and hostility towards China “runs rampant” in India,the state media has said,citing the predicament faced by Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh for his recent pro-China comments.
Commenting on the outcome of a survey released on May 15,the China Daily said though it may not be comprehensive the study should sound alarms that “China and India need to do more to deepen mutual understanding,especially at the people-to-people level.”
The commentary titled ‘Bridging China-India Gap’ said,45 per cent of Chinese view India favourably,while 43 per cent of Indians viewed China as a partner.
“More disturbingly,most Chinese still perceive India,along with the US and Japan,as posing the most threat to China,” it said.
“Findings about whether Indians perceive China as a threat are unavailable. But there is ample evidence that a considerable number of Indians do consider China a threat.
Suspicion and even hostility toward China also run rampant in Indian society,” it said.
“The plight of Ramesh offers an immediate example of this judgement. No sooner had he made some remarks in favour of China during his visit to Beijing earlier this month than the Indian official came under immediate attacks from his own countrymen,” it said.
The survey was conducted by Beijing-based Horizon Research Consultancy.
Also the restrictions being imposed on import of Chinese telecom equipment,the subject of Ramesh criticism also reflects the distrust.
“The common practice of India applying stricter terms on imports from China than from Western countries also bears witness to the country’s distrust of its neighbour to the north.
Many Chinese experts believe trade protectionism is behind India’s suspension of importing telecom equipment from China,” it said.
Apparently,there is a huge gap between how our two countries are perceived by each other and how our two countries wish to be treated,it said adding that due to issues left over from history,the bond between our two peoples is not as close as it was in the Mao-Nehru era.
“The West-dominated media machine has also amplified disputes and fuels rancour between us. All that has sowed the seeds of misunderstanding and estrangement,” it said.
Beijing and New Delhi vowed to push bilateral ties to a new high while marking the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two nations last month.
More people-to-people level exchanges should be conducted to expand mutual understanding,update our knowledge about each other and improve our perceptions,it said.
“The two countries also should tackle their differences in a more constructive and forward-thinking way.
It is in our two peoples’ interests to forge a friendly relationship featuring robust trade ties and deeper political trust.
Only when the two Asian giants feel a genuine closeness between them will the world treat our two nations with more awe and respect,” it said.
Majority of Indians regard China as a friend and partner in sharp contrast to feeling among Chinese who consider Pakistan a better partner and place India next only to the US and Japan in the list of nations that threatened their country the most,according to the survey.
The survey was conducted by Beijing-based Horizon Research Consultancy was released the 2nd India-China Forum meeting here on May 15.
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