New Delhi: As Tamil Nadu is rolling out the red carpet from China President Xi Jinping, all eyes are on the second formal meeting between Narendra Modi and Xi — not only because both India and China are crucial partners in South Asia, but also because of the recent Kashmir issue. China is Pakistan’s all-weather friends and Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has met Xi Jinping in China.
Will Kashmir be discussed?
After a guided cultural tour on day one, the two leaders will hold a talk on the second day. Kashmir and Article 370 are not on agenda, the ministry of external affairs has clarified as the issue is internal. However, according to reports, Xi Jinping is believed to have said to Imran Khan that China was watching the Kashmir situation and would support Pakistan in issues regarding its core interests.
Why Mahabalipuram: The Monuments to be Visited
The leaders will visit Arjuna’s Penance, Panchrathas, and the Shor Temple. Mahabalipuram has a China connection. Chinese Buddhist monk Xuanzang had visited Kanchipuram during the Pallava dynasty and spoken about his visit in an elaborate way. Mahabalipuram has been a major port city during the Pallava kingdom in the 7th century. There have been major trading connections between Pallava and Chola kingdoms of South India with the southeastern coast of China — particularly the province of Fujian and city of Quanzhou. China’s Song dynasty had maintained diplomatic ties with the Chola kingdom. It is interesting to know, President Xi has been the governor of Fujian (1999-2002).
Wuhan Spirit refers to the agreement of co-operation Indian and China have, which was upheld in the first informal meeting between Modi and Jinping in Wuhan. A lakeside walk along the East Lake in Wuhan to enjoying a traditional Chinese tea ceremony as well as a boat ride and a lunch hosted by Xi for the Prime Minister — all these featured during Modi’s visit to Wuhan in 2018.
According to reports, no documents would be signed nor a joint communique issued as the talks will be informal and unstructured. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and NSA will also accompany Xi and thus there may be meetings scheduled with their counterparts S Jaishankar and Ajit Doval.
Trade and Border Issues
Security aspects will be discussed by Modi and Xi with peace and tranquillity at the border in focus. Terrorism and trade will also come up in talks.