India using Kashmir to resist Silk Road project: Chinese Media

Srinagar:

India sees China’s Silk Road initiative as a geopolitical competition and is using the Kashmir issue as an ‘unfounded excuse’ to oppose the ambitious project, Chinese state media on Thursday alleged and asked New Delhi to ‘abandon’ its ‘cliche mentality’.

“The official reason the Indian government rejected the offer to join the initiative (Silk Road) is that it is designed to pass through Kashmir. However, it is just an unfounded excuse as Beijing has been maintaining a consistent position on the Kashmir issue, which has never changed,” one of the two articles on India by state-run Global Times said.

“India sees the Belt and Road initiative as a geopolitical competition,” the article said, criticising India for hindering Beijing’s push into South Asia and the world with multi-billion Silk Road project which is also known as the ‘Belt and Road’ (BR).

“Whether to continue to boycott or join the Belt and Road remains a conundrum for New Delhi,” it said adding that, India is the only one which can help itself.

The article said that India should give up its ‘biased’ view on the BR initiative.

The article referred to a comment by Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar during his visit here last month to co-chair the upgraded India-China strategic dialogue, saying India is examining China’s invitation to attend the summit and “how a country whose sovereignty has been violated can come on an invitation”.

Another article in the same daily said a “benign” competition between India and China may help development in South Asia but they should avoid “cut-throat” rivalry.

“The so-called dragon-elephant contention is perhaps a blow against strategic mutual trust between Beijing and New Delhi, but may be conducive to development in South Asia,” it said.

Accusing India of not being “generous” to its neighbours, it said “a yawning infrastructure funding gap in South Asian countries creates space for China and those nations to strengthen economic cooperation”.

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