Arunachal protests new iPhone4 maps’ China tilt

October 3rd, 2010 - 2:53 pm ICT by IANS  

By Syed Zarir Hussain
Itanagar, Oct 3 (IANS) Arunachal Pradesh Sunday lodged a strong protest with the central government over US-based Apple’s latest iPhone4 containing maps depicting the northeastern Indian state as part of Chinese territory.

According to reports, the latest smartphone launched in China contains maps showing Arunachal Pradesh as part of China.

“This is yet another attempt at painting a wrong picture on the territorial integrity of Arunachal Pradesh and we strongly protest this nefarious design,” Takam Sanjay, Congress party MP in the Lok Sabha from Arunachal Pradesh, told IANS.

Sanjay said a formal protest over Apple’s latest iPhone4 gaffe was lodged with the central government.

“We want Apple to immediately rectify the fault and ensure that Arunachal Pradesh is shown as very much part of India,” Sanjay said.

This is not the first time that Arunachal Pradesh has been shown as part of China - twice in the past two years Google showed the northeastern state as part of China.

“Earlier this year, Google had sent an apology when I took up the matter with the search engine through the Indian government and rectified it. But the question is not about just an apology when everybody knows Arunachal Pradesh is an integral part of India,” the MP said.

“I think this is nothing but a conspiracy and an appeasement policy by all these international technology giants, including the search engine Google,” he alleged.

In 2009, Google maps for India marked areas of Arunachal Pradesh, including its capital Itanagar and Tawang, in Chinese. The maps showed the state with dotted lines, signifying its disputed status.

Google later admitted its mistake and rectified it for Indian users.

“Again I am saying, a simple apology would fail to undo the damage and hurt caused to the people of Arunachal Pradesh,” Sanjay said.

The mountainous state of Arunachal Pradesh shares a 1,030-km unfenced border with China. The McMahon Line, an imaginary border now known as the Line of Actual Control (LAC), separates the Sino-Indian border along Arunachal Pradesh.

India and China fought a bitter border war in 1962, with Chinese troops advancing deep into Arunachal Pradesh and inflicting heavy casualties on Indian troops.

The border dispute with China was inherited by India from the British colonial rulers, who hosted a 1914 conference with the Tibetan and Chinese governments that set the border in what is now Arunachal Pradesh.

China has never recognised the 1914 boundary, known as the McMahon Line, and claims 90,000 sq km — nearly all of Arunachal Pradesh. New Delhi accuses China of occupying 8,000 sq km of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Arunachal Pradesh government has from time to time been warning New Delhi about Chinese incursions.

After the 1962 Sino-Indian War, tension flared again in 1986 with Indian and Chinese forces clashing in the Sumdorong Chu valley of Arunachal Pradesh.

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