10 June 2024

China-India Name War Intensifies in the Himalayas

Subir Bhaumik and Pratyusha Mukherjee

India has started a tit-for-tat nomenclature offensive to counter China’s renaming of places in India’s Arunachal Pradesh state. New Delhi plans to rename more than two dozens places in China’s Tibet Autonomous Region.

The Diplomat has seen a complete list of the places to be renamed, provided by Indian military sources. The list is expected to be released soon after a new government takes power in Delhi next week, after the results of the seven-phase election to the national Parliament were announced on June 4.

“Prime Minister Modi has sought to win these polls on the strength of his strongman image. It is natural he will authorize the renaming of Tibetan places to live up to that image,” said former Intelligence Bureau officer Benu Ghosh, who has followed China and the border issue with India for decades.

New Delhi suspects that China’s renaming of places in Arunachal Pradesh is aimed at strengthening Beijing’s territorial claim on the largest province in northeastern India, which China chooses to call Zangnan or “southern Tibet.”

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