Media hype a bad dose for Sino-Indian relations

By Liu Zhun Source:Global Times Published: 2015-9-15 0:33:01

Several Indian media outlets have reported that tension is on the rise along the line of actual control (LAC) between India and China after a recent confrontation near Burtse in northern Ladakh. According to Indian media, the Indian army dismantled a Chinese watchtower close to the mutually agreed patrolling line. High-ranking Indian officials told media that both sides have sent reinforcements.

China's foreign ministry responded to the reported incident on Monday, saying there is no such face-off in the border areas, and that the Indian side can "clarify" the issue.

 After the border war in 1962, China and India have basically exercised restraint for more than half a century to maintain peace and stability near the border areas. Neither side has the intention to be engaged in a large-scale confrontation.

So far, there are not enough details to confirm the demolition incident. What we know mostly comes from the Indian media. According to their reports, the situation has not developed into a complete face-off. It means the Chinese army has stayed calm and self-restrained in face of the incident.

What's more, the Chinese government and media have also downplayed the case, which has garnered much less public attention in China than in India.

The Indian media tends to sensationalize such border incidents to catch the eyes of the public. Strong and headline-grabbing words such as "invasion" and "face-off" are rife in their remarks or reports, raising more tensions and anti-China emotions among the public. Hype like this keeps jeopardizing Indian society's perception about China.

It seems that the Indian military and media have formed an information chain to make a fuss about some indefinite issues particularly related to border security.

Although the Indian government's statements deny some of the Indian media's most exaggerated reports, the media has rarely rectified these unverified reports. Haunted by this climate, the Indian public is often blinded by the confrontational stereotypes.

China is committed to developing a reciprocal relationship with India, not only at government-to-government levels, but also at people-to-people levels.

The Indian media should take more responsibilities, if it really wants to cherish the sound momentum of bilateral relations. It should guide its people's attention from the drab disputes in remote mountains to the common ground the two countries are exploring.

Posted in: Observer

blog comments powered by Disqus