Terming China's decision to rename 15 districts in Arunachal Pradesh as a "ridiculous excercise", Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said that India's neighbour should concentrate on strengthening bilateral ties and fruitful diplomacy instead.
"Calling Tuting as "DouDeng" or River Siyom as "XiYueMu" or even Kibithu as "Daba" does not alter the fact that Arunachal Pradesh has always been and will always remain an inalienable part of India," he stated at a weekly press briefing.
China's Ministry of Civil Affairs last week announced "standardised" names of 15 locations in Arunachal Pradesh. This was the second time since 2017 that such an exercise was carried out by Beijing.
In addition to this, China has been building a bridge across the Pangong Tso lake in Ladakh, in an area which Bagchi described as having been "illegally occupied" by the Chinese for 60 years. The government was keeping a close eye on the activities taking place at the lake he stressed.
Bagchi criticised a recent letter sent by the Political Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy in response to Indian Members of Parliament attending a meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Forum for Tibet, and said that China should not "hype" ordinary activities engaged in by representatives of the Indian government. It was inappropriate to have sent such a letter, the MEA spokesperson declared.
"The substance, tone and tenor of the letter are inappropriate. Chinese side should note that India is a vibrant democracy and Hon'ble MPs, as representatives of the people, undertake activities as per their views and beliefs," he said.
Bagchi went on to say India hoped that instead of engaging in such antics, China would "work constructively with us to resolve the outstanding friction points in areas along the western sector of the LAC in India-China border areas."
During the press meet, Bagchi said that no decision had been made on India attending the postponed SAARC summit that was due to be held in Islamabad in 2016. The summit was postponed after India withdrew from participation.