New Delhi: India will send a “mid-level tri-service delegation of the Indian armed forces” to China, with naval ships too set to dock at Chinese ports. The two nations will also host a series of cultural exchanges relating to Buddhism and the visit of ancient Chinese Buddhist traveller Hiuen Tsang (known as Xuanzang in China). On Friday, a total of 70 measures to be taken jointly by the two Asian giants were announced to celebrate the 70th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries. These will be undertaken in 2020-21.
Reiterating what was announced at the end of the two-day informal summit last month between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Mamallapuram near Chennai, the MEA also said the two countries would engage “in cooperative projects in studying ancient maritime links between India and China through establishment of sister-state relations between Tamil Nadu and Fujian Province and exploring the possibility of establishing an academy to study links between Tamil Nadu and Fujian Province”.
“The Indian side will send its naval ships to visit China. A mid-level tri-service delegation of the Indian armed forces will visit China,” the MEA announced on Friday.
“The two sides will celebrate the 10th anniversary of the completion of an Indian-style Buddha Hall in the White Horse Temple in Luoyang. A Chinese Buddhist delegation will visit India and hold prayer activities in Xuanzang Memorial Hall in Nalanda. The Chinese side will invite an Indian Buddhist delegation to attend Celebrations for Bathing — the Buddha Festival in China — and jointly pray for world peace and friendship between our two peoples,” the MEA said.
“The Chinese side will hold an International Xuanzang Forum in China, advancing Xuanzang-related studies,” it added.
Ancient Chinese Buddhist traveller Hiuen Tsang visited India in the 7th-century AD during the reign of King Harshavardhana in northern India and the Pallava dynasty in southern India.
There will be other cultural exchanges too, including in the field of martial arts and also economic exchanges including a visit by a team of Indian CEOs to China.
On Friday, the MEA said, “In order to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and China, Prime Minister of India Mr. Narendra Modi and President of the People’s Republic of China Mr. Xi Jinping had agreed during their Second Informal Summit on October 11-12, 2019 in Chennai to organise 70 celebratory activities in India and China. These activities will demonstrate the historic connect between the two civilisations as well as their growing bilateral relationship over the years. They will further deepen people-to-people exchanges between the two countries at all levels, including between their respective legislatures, businesses, academics, cultural and youth organisations as well as the defence forces.”
The MEA added, “The two sides will also engage in cooperative projects in studying ancient maritime links between India and China through establishment of sister-state relations between Tamil Nadu and Fujian Province, exploring the possibility of establishing an academy to study links between Tamil Nadu and Fujian Province, conducting research on maritime links between India and China in view of our extensive contacts over the centuries and (holding) a conference on a ship voyage that will trace the historic connect between the two civilisations.”