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Monday, September 21, 2020

August 8, 1980, Forty Years Ago: Rao On China

From improving ties with China to floods in UP, headlines that made news on this day, forty years ago.

By: Editorial | August 8, 2020 12:09:50 am
The Indian Express Front Page from August 8, 1980

India sincerely wants to improve relations with China, but would like to “leave the pace” to that country. This was stated by External Affairs Minister P V Narasimha Rao in the Rajya Sabha. During the 70-minute speech in Parliament, the minister also touched upon non-alignment, the Indian Ocean, North-South cooperation, West Asia, Pakistan and Bangladesh. Rao saw nothing to react in the postponement of the visit by the Chinese Foreign Minister as neither the date nor the month had been fixed. It was quite possible that either side might find the timing inconvenient, the minister said. After expressing the sincere desire to normalise relations with China, he said he did not want to start with distrust or put conditions.

Foreign Hand

Prime Minister Indira Gandhi has said that foreign powers have always backed separatist inclinations of some nationalities which inhabit India’s northeastern regions, reports Tass from Paris. She said in an interview with the French newspaper Le Figaro that large amounts of foreign-made arms were seized from the separatist units which operate in those regions. Mrs Gandhi said persons who underwent training in China are operating in the union territory of Mizoram, according to Tass. On Indo-Chinese relations, she stressed that the Chinese lay territorial claims also to Burma and Vietnam, Tass said.

UP Floods

The floods which have played havoc so far in eastern Uttar Pradesh have now struck the western districts — the low-lying areas of Mathura were inundated as the Yamuna river crossed its danger level by 13 cm. Although the Yamuna is rising menacingly in Agra its level is below the red mark there. In Muzaffarnagar, 85 villages with a population of more than 23,000 have
been affected.

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