(TibetanReview.net, Jun02, 2016) – China’s premier government think-tank that focuses on justifying and strengthening Chinese rule in Tibet and its policy there has for the first time signaled its readiness to open its doors to India, reported indiatoday.intoday.in May 31. In connection with this development, moves are underway to initiate exchanges between Indian and China-based Tibetan academics, the report added.
The development came in the wake of the China Tibetology Research Centre (CTRC) in Beijing hosting during the week India’s Bharatiya Janata Party leader and MP Mr Subramanian Swamy as well as Indian Embassy officials, with the discussions being focused on expanding links between the two countries.
The report cited officials as saying that in the past, China had viewed India with particular sensitivity, given the Dalai Lama’s presence and the sizeable Tibetan community in the country.
CTRC is, of course, an official think-tank and parrots Beijing’s views on Tibet, and will likely restrict exchanges to Indian scholars who are known supporters of Chinese rule and policies in Tibet.
“The CTRC said they had cooperation with 22 countries but I was surprised to find very little with India,” Dr Swamy was quoted as saying. “I will write to the Prime Minister and suggest we look at a joint formal collaboration between the CTRC and an institution such as the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), which is currently headed by Professor Lokesh Chandra, who is himself a prominent Tibetologist.”
“The time has come for us to normalise our relations with China to the extent that we can interact across the border, whether in Tibet or Xinjiang, which would boost economic cooperation and the ability of tourists to travel,” he was further quoted as saying.