2013: Roller coaster year for Sino-India ties

Last Updated: Thu, Dec 26, 2013 05:34 hrs
India-China PMs begin talks

Beijing: The relationship between India and China experienced both highs and lows in 2013 with high-level reciprocal visits and inking of a pact to defuse recurring border stand-offs after incursions by Chinese troops dented bilateral ties.

Notwithstanding tensions, Prime Ministers of both the countries paid back to back visits to each other for the first time in nearly six decades.

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visited New Delhi in April and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh travelled to Beijing in October.

The last time such reciprocal visits took place was in 1954 when Premier Zhou Enlai and Jawaharlal Nehru visited each others' country.

The visits of Li and Singh in 2013 were regarded as landmark and the two sides tried to recreate the warmth and friendship which had evaporated after the 1962 war.

The significance of Li's decision to make India his first destination after taking over office was in danger of loosing its importance when Chinese troops pitched their tents in Depsang Valley in Ladakh region in April.

However, the prickly issue was resolved through intesne talks which led to the withdrawal of the Chinese troops.

Li's goodwill tour was fairly successful with the Chinese leader seeking to assuage frayed tempers. The impact of Li's visit was felt during Singh's trip to Beijing when the Chinese leadership displayed considerable warmth.

During Singh's three-day visit the two sides signed the Border Defence Cooperation Agreement (BDCA) which provided a comprehensive mechanism to address issues arising out of the patrolling of the disputed border.

The closely negotiated agreement, aimed at reducing any future frictions at the border, could provide a new opening to push forward relations enabling the two countries to device means of progress even as they negotiate for its settlement by the designated officials.

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