The Dalai Lama's visit to Arunachal Pradesh in March will damage the relationship of India with China; Beijing has warned.
The invitation to the "Dalai Lama for activity in the disputed areas between China and India will just damage peace and stability of the border areas as well as the bilateral relationship between China and India," said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang.
The tension over the planned excursion comes as China has blocked India from joining the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a powerful 48-state bloc, and is seen as siding with long-time ally Pakistan at a time when New Delhi and Islamabad are caught in the worst tension in over a decade.
Chief Minister Pema Khandu, whose coalition government contains the BJP has invited to Arunachal Pradesh the Dalai Lama. The exiled Tibetan spiritual leader and the border state last visited with in 2009.
China maintains Arunachal Pradesh as South Tibet.
The Dalai Lama, denounced by China as a separatist for seeking autonomy for Tibet, fled from there through Arunachal Pradesh in 1959 after a failed uprising against Chinese rule. He's anticipated on his excursion to see a famous Buddhist monastery of Tawang.
Yesterday, Foreign Ministry representative Vikas Swarup confirmed the Dali Lama, "a guest of India," is free to see the region.
On October 21, the US Ambassador posted photographs on his Twitter accounts of his recent trip to Arunachal Pradesh, thanking Indian officials for their "warm hospitality" and calling the area a "charming place." Beijing asked the US to "stop getting involved with the China-India territorial dispute."
China claims more than 90,000 sq kilometers (35,000 sq miles) of territory disputed by India in the eastern sector of the Himalayas. India rejects that claim and says China occupies 38,000 square kilometers (14,600 sq miles) of its territory on the Aksai Chin plateau in the west.