We learnt nothing from past follies
Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s China Visit had to be hyped keeping the ensuing Polls in mind. And India media, in its frenzy, fulfilled BJPs ambitions in all innocence. A respected journalist Inder Malhotra rightly pointed out:
“As has happened all too often in the past and is most certain to be repeated in the future, the media contingent accompanying him went into a tizzy of exaggeration and hyperbole.”
As Inder said, despite of the media projections of the visit restoring the “Hindi-Chini bhai-bhai” (Indo-Chinese brotherhood) kinship again it was more of “Hindi-Chini Buy-buy” with India succumbing to Chinese pressure and perhaps for the first time recognizing Tibet as part of China writing off the Dalai Lama and the Tibetans who have been continuing their “religious activities” under the Indian shelter (in Dharamsala) for long.
While conceding to the Chinese demand Vajpayee came home gratified with the oral assurance of a change in their Sikkim policy in the future. Indian Media had very falsely rejoiced earlier of China recognizing Sikkim as part of India. Apparently it was nothing of that sorts. A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman had clarified that the Sikkim question is an enduring legacy of the past and said that “it cannot be solved overnight”.
Vajpayee’s “historic” visit may or may not emerge as fruitful on economic front but surely he returned home with a synthetic smile and a twisted arm.
And you thought Atalji was different? 🙂