Beijing, Sep 23 :
India’s foreign policy is an independent one and no major power can impose its will on the “giant elephant” of South Asia, a leading Chinese daily said in an article Tuesday, while underlining the importance of the Sino-Indian relationship.
The bilateral ties were complementary and improving, as the two neighbours have found a “practical and postive” way to manage their territorial dispute, the People’s Daily said.
“India, the ‘giant elephant’ of South Asia, operates an independent foreign policy,” the People’s Daily in its online edition said in an article headlined “Japan cannot rely on India to counter China”.
The paper, which is the mouthpiece of the ruling Communist Party of China, highlighted the fact that Chinese President Xi Jinping, during his visit to India this month, met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his home state of Gujarat.
“This visit was a symbol of mutual respect between India and China, and has been seen as the first step in establishing a personal relationship between the top leaders of the two countries,” the article stated.
“It is of indispensable strategic value for India to cooperate with China on a friendly basis. How India manages its other relationships is another story. To be good neighbours with China has significant geopolitical implications, and is of all-around benefit to both India and China.”
Referring to Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Japan earlier this month, the article stated: “Some commentators in Japan suggested that the leaders of Japan and India were aiming to build a strategic counterweight to China. The suggestions are groundless.”
Stating that friendly relations between neighbouring countries are a basic precondition for health in other foreign affairs, the article said this applied especially to India today.
“It can be clearly asserted that the stronger the Sino-India relationship is, the better India will be able to manage its relationships with the US and Japan.”
According to the article, China is considered to be the biggest rival to the US and Japan.
“Both the US and Japan are inclined to look for allies to help them counter China. These two countries will try to discourage India from any rapprochement with China if the two countries seem to be getting too close. However, they will want bilateral relationships to be improved if there is a downturn,” the article said.
Mentioning that China sought to have long-term benefits from its relationship with India, the articl said the relationship between the two countries “is of independent strategic value and it has nothing to do with relationships with America and Japan”.
“The Sino-India bond has been improving for many years, better than many other foreign relationships. Rationality and perspective play dominant roles in Sino-India relationships.”
It said the governments of the two countries were taking a practical and positive approach when it came to territorial disputes in order not to damage their bilateral relationship.
“This is a most reasonable approach in dealing with territorial disputes in Asia. It also provide the two countries with a new angle to manage this kind of dispute,” the article stated.
“It is necessary to understand that China and India are complementary to each other,” it concluded.