External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Friday called upon his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi to follow an independent policy on India, and not allow China's approach to be influenced by other countries.
Jaishankar made the comments in his talks with Wang while referring to the Chinese foreign minister's comments on Kashmir three days back at a meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Islamabad.
New Delhi had criticised Wang's remarks asserting that other countries have no locus standi to comment on Jammu and Kashmir as it is an internal matter of India.
At a media briefing on his talks with Wang, Jaishankar said the issue figured in the deliberations. "Yes, it did. I referred to it. I explained to him why we found that statement objectionable. So, it was a subject discussed at some length. There was a larger context as well," Jaishankar said.
"You know, I conveyed that we hoped that China would follow an independent policy in respect of India, and not allow its policies to be influenced by other countries and other relationships. So that was that context," he added. China has close ties with Pakistan and Islamabad has been unsuccessfully attempting to corner India on the Kashmir issue.
To a question, Jaishankar said the issue of terrorism emanating from Pakistan also figured in his talks with Wang. "It did come up in terms of my sharing with him, what is the Indian view of the concerns that we have in respect of Pakistan and, of course, what were some of the positions taken during the OIC meeting," he said.
Asked whether China has invited India to a conference it is hosting on Afghanistan, Jaishankar said no such invitation has been received. To another query on why Wang's visit to India was kept under wraps as there was no official word even after his arrival in Delhi on Thursday evening, the external affairs minister indicated that the Chinese side did not want any announcement on it.
"The question on the visit itself - typically, to announce a visit, it's done by mutual convenience and for whatever reason, the Chinese did not want this set of visits which Wang Yi did, to be announced earlier. So since we did not have mutual agreement, we did not make our announcement," Jaishankar said.
Wang, who arrived in Delhi from Kabul, is now in Nepal. He flew into the Afghan capital after paying a two-day visit to Pakistan.
China, India should put differences on border issue at 'proper position' in bilateral ties: Wang
China and India should put their differences on the border issue at a "proper position" in bilateral relations and stick to the "right direction" of bilateral ties, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Friday.
Wang, who held talks with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and National Security advisor Ajit Doval in New Delhi on Friday, proposed a three-point approach to achieve the development of bilateral relations.
"First, both sides should view bilateral relations with a long-term vision. Second, they should see each other's development with a win-win mentality. Third, both countries should take part in the multilateral process with a cooperative posture," state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
The Chinese minister said that the two countries "should put their differences at a proper position in their bilateral relations and stick to the right direction of the China-India ties," Xinhua reported.
Wang, who holds the rank of a State Councillor - a high ranking position in the executive organ of the Chinese government, is also the Special Representative of China for India-China border talks along with National Security Advisor Doval.
This is the first visit by a high ranking Chinese official since the Ladakh standoff started in May 2020 leading to the breakdown of the relations between the two countries. Wang said that Beijing was willing to explore "China-India Plus" cooperation in South Asia to forge a cooperation model with a healthy interaction, so as to achieve mutually beneficial and win-win cooperation at a higher level and in a wider range, the agency reported.
China does not pursue the so-called "unipolar Asia" and respects India's traditional role in the region, Wang said in New Delhi where he arrived on an unannounced visit from Kabul on Thursday night. In the first major diplomatic engagement between India and China in nearly two years, Wang and Jaishankar on Friday held extensive talks covering the eastern Ladakh row and the geopolitical turmoil triggered by the crisis in Ukraine, official sources in New Delhi said.
Ahead of talks with Jaishankar, Wang met NSA Doval and held extensive talks on the border row, the sources said.
India and China have been holding high-level military talks to resolve the face-off in the remaining friction points in eastern Ladakh. Both sides withdrew troops already from some of the friction points following the talks. On March 11, India and China held the 15th round of high-level military dialogue to resolve the pending issues in the eastern Ladakh region. However, there was no forward movement in the talks which were aimed at resolving the remaining issues.