As the Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi raised the K-word in Beijing during talks with his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar, the latter set the record straight, calling it India’s internal matter.
“The issue related to changes in a temporary provision of the Constitution of India. There was no implication for either the external boundaries of India or the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China. India was not raising any new territorial claims,” said Jaishankar.
It was not clear if Wang Yi was convinced or the need to shore up “iron brother” Pakistan could see China backing their plans for a high profile effort in the United Nations.
But the statement issued made it clear that “the future of the India-China relationship will obviously depend on sensitivity to each other’s concerns”.
As the Chinese foreign minister referred to rising tensions between India and Pakistan due to the changes on Jammu and Kashmir, Jaishankar emphasised that these changes had no bearing on Pakistan as it was India’s internal matter and did not impact the Line of Control (LoC).
Among other issues discussed were hints of an alternative route for pilgrims heading for Kailash Mansarovar Yatra. The Chinese appeared positive although detailed talks still remain to be held.
Jaishankar said the economic relationship has seen some progress since the Wuhan summit but added that the increasing trade deficit was a “matter of concern”.
Wang Yi “appreciated” India’s concerns about the trade deficit and indicated he was ready to help, asking what India wanted. Investment by Chinese firms in India was an option.
Jaishankar said he “could speak frankly” with Wang Yi. 5G came up in passing but was inconclusive since there is no word yet on when trials will be held in India
“I was briefed on China’s ties with the U.S.,” said Jaishankar. “The evolving global situation and the larger rebalancing that reflected the rise of India and China as two large developing countries” was also discussed.