Beijing, July 25 (IANS) Warning of “serious consequences” over the expulsion of three Chinese journalists by India, a state-owned daily urged Beijing to make “a few Indians” feel the pain over Chinese visas.
“If New Delhi is really taking revenge due to the NSG membership issue, there will be serious consequences,” an editorial in the Global Times said.
India has refused to extend the visas of three Chinese journalists from the Chinese government-run Xinhua news agency. But New Delhi said Xinhua could always send new replacements.
The Global Times noted that no official reason was given for the rejection of the visa request of the three Chinese journalists.
“Some Indian media claimed that the three journalists are suspected of impersonating other people to access several restricted departments in Delhi and Mumbai with fake names.
“There were also reports attributing it to the journalists’ meeting with exiled Tibetan activists.
“Moreover, speculation is swirling that India is taking revenge against China for the latter’s opposition to India joining the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).”
The hard-hitting editorial noted that Indian society had in recent years witnessed soaring nationalism.
“Crowned by Western public opinion as the world’s biggest democracy, the Indians have a strong sense of pride.
“China should stick to a friendly strategy toward India… On the visa issue this time, we should take actions to display our reaction. We at least should make a few Indians feel Chinese visas are also not easy to get.”
By refusing to extend their visas, the Chinese journalists will have to leave India.
The three include Wu Qiang, the Xinhua bureau chief in Delhi, and Tang Lu, chief correspondent at the Mumbai bureau.
The Global Times said: “It’s not a good thing that India has turned down Chinese reporters’ applications for new visas. The act has sent negative messages and media communications between China and India will inevitably be negatively impacted.
“India has a suspicious mind. No matter whether Chinese reporters apply for a long-term or a temporary journalist visa, they will come across many troubles.”
Ties between India and China have been strained since Beijing came out strongly against New Delhi’s entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) on grounds that it was not signatory to the NPT.
(Gaurav Sharma is the Beijing-based correspondent of IANS. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com)