Itanagar, April 12: India has hit back at China’s criticism of Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh, stating that objections to such visits will not change the ground reality. China had strongly objected to Shah’s recent visit to the northeastern state, claiming that it violated Beijing’s territorial sovereignty.

However, India has rejected these comments, stating that Indian leaders routinely travel to the state of Arunachal Pradesh, which is an integral and inalienable part of India. “Objecting to such visits does not stand to reason and will not change the above reality,” said Foreign Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi.

Shah’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh was to launch a village welfare programme in Anjaw district, which is located 11 km from the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and 40 km from the India-China-Myanmar tri-junction.

During the visit, Shah sent out a strong message to China, stating that no one can encroach on even the tip of a pin’s worth of India’s territory. He further added that gone are those days when people could encroach into Indian land.

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India and China have been engaged in a border standoff since May 2020, following a violent face-off between the troops of the two countries in eastern Ladakh.

The relationship between the two countries worsened after the Galwan Valley clash in June 2020 that left 20 Indian soldiers and at least four Chinese troops dead. Since then, both sides have deployed thousands of troops along the LAC and held multiple military and diplomatic talks to resolve the border issue.

India’s firm response to China’s objection to Shah’s visit is significant as it shows that India is not willing to back down on its stance on Arunachal Pradesh, which it considers an integral part of India.

This also highlights India’s commitment to protecting its territorial integrity and sovereignty, which it sees as non-negotiable. It remains to be seen how China will respond to India’s rejection of its objection to Shah’s visit and whether it will further escalate tensions between the two countries.