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HomeGlobal NewsNomenclature war: India planning to rename over two dozen sites in Tibet,...

Nomenclature war: India planning to rename over two dozen sites in Tibet, says report | India News – Times of India

TOI News Desk

NEW DELHI: India is planning to rename over two dozen places in China’s Tibet Autonomous Region in a tit-for-tat move against China renaming places in Arunachal Pradesh, according to a report in the Diplomat.
The list of places to be renamed has been finalised by the Army’s information warfare division and will be released soon, said the report by the Diplomat. The new names are backed by extensive historical research and widely held opinions of the local residents, many of whom fiercely oppose the Chinese names.
The unit has also been debunking the Chinese names with support from top research institutes like the British-era Asiatic Society based in Kolkata.
The renaming campaign aims to push through an Indian counter-narrative on the border through regional and global media, anchored on both solid historical research and local residents’ voices.
Tactic started by China in 2017
The move comes after Beijing on several instances changed names of places in Arunachal Pradesh.
In March, China renamed 30 places along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the state, including 11 residential areas, 12 mountains, four rivers, one lake, one mountain pass, and a piece of land.
It was the fourth time that China unilaterally renamed places in the state. Beijing released the first list of the so-called standardised names of six places in Arunachal Pradesh in 2017, the second list of 15 places in 2021, and a third list with names for 11 places in 2023.
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 calls Zangnan or “southern Tibet”.
India has repeatedly rejected China’s move to rename places in Arunachal Pradesh, asserting that the state is an integral part of the country and that assigning “invented” names does not alter this reality.
The latest round of efforts by China to reassert its claims over the state started with Beijing lodging a diplomatic protest with India over Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s March 2024 visit to Arunachal Pradesh, where he dedicated the Sela Tunnel built at an altitude of 13,000 feet.
External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar on March 23 dismissed China’s repeated claims on Arunachal Pradesh as “ludicrous” and stressed that the frontier state was a “natural part of India”.
With Prime Minister Narendra Modi retaining Rajnath Singh as defence minister, it is expected that the list of names will be released soon.
Experts said that when India reveals the new names, it will be akin to New Delhi reopening the Tibetan question, which is bound to illicit a sharp reaction from China.
(With inputs from the Diplomat)

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