Strange! Strange! Strange! The Chinese sent a probe about an Indian Consulate to be opened in Lhasa. It was denied by the MEA and later by the spokesman of the Chinese Foreign Ministry. What was the point in sending this probe? It was recently reported that traders using the centuries-trade route crossing into Tibet at Lipulekh-la have only imported Rs 73000 worth of goods this year. The business over Nathu-la is not flourishing either (Rs. 9 lakhs in July after two months lull). Then what is the point to open a Consulate in Lhasa? The pilgrims to Kailash-Manasarovar do not need a Consulate to reach the holy mountain. Beijing probably wants to 'balance' the negative reports in the press about the deterioration of the bilateral relations with Delhi. Is there anything else? The future will tell us. I am told that the Dekyi Linkga (on the pictures), the former residence of the British (and then Indian after 1947) heads of the Indian Mission in Tibet still exists and is used by the Army or the paramilitary force. It was one of the most beautiful residences of the Tibetan capital with lovely gardens.
India can open consulate in Lhasa: Chinese official
IANS 25 August 2009,
LHASA: More than 40 years after bad blood between India and China closed down the Indian consulate in Tibetan capital Lhasa, a Chinese foreign ministry official says New Delhi can re-open it any time it wants.
"India can set up a consulate in Lhasa," said Jujian Hua, director at Tibet's Foreign Affairs Office. "That depends on India."
With the 13th round of border talks between India and China resuming in New Delhi earlier this month, Beijing is emphasizing that it wants improved relations with its southern neighbour.
"The (resumption of) cross-border talks between China and India represents a great step in the relationship between the two countries," Jujian told a visiting IANS correspondent.
"The two governments started communication several years ago in terms of trade and culture. The local government (of Tibet) has attached great importance to trade, culture and tradition (exchanges), including tourism."
According to him, tourism has greatly increased with more than 12,000 Indian pilgrims visiting Tibet this year to circumambulate Mt Kailash, the 6,638m Himalayan peak in Tibet's Nari province that is venerated by Hindus, Buddhists and Jains alike.
"Deepening the bilateral relationship really depends on India," the official said.
"Between friends, we should communicate more so that our relationship is strengthened. The central government of China and the Tibet Autonomous