China is now-a-days in the news in the world for various reasons. But recent one is because of an arrest (May 2020) and subsequently jailed for four years by a lady journalist namely Ms. Zhang Zhan, a 37-year old lady. Her fault was that she reported from the central city of Wuhan at the peak of last year’s coronavirus outbreak. She highlighted the truth by visiting at the grass root level i.e. primary source without relying on secondary source. Earlier, also few were tried, who from crowded hospitals and empty streets painted an appalling picture of the pandemic than ‘the official narrative, a rosy picture’. It is pertinent to mention that I had the opportunity to visit China in December 2015 and visited many places. Also I interacted with around 20 Chinese people as many were not good in English. Honestly writing, I had observed they were sacred to talk about Government policy, functioning of Government etc. That way India is far better, as we can even talk against the policy of the ruling Government. Of course, the positive side is that all in unison told me “they want a very friendly relation with India. Many educated persons told me India and China had strong bonding since the inception of civilization so both should come closer and closer. They want to forget the 1962 war”. By reading different national and international newspapers in recent years my feeling is that leaders of China cannot digest any criticism if it is against the policy of the Government. And might be for this reason, at least three journalists disappeared in February, 2020. One is Mr. Li Zehua, who reappeared in April, 2020 saying he had been ‘quarantining’. The second one is Mr. Chen Qiushi, who reported the outbreak of the coronavirus; of course later on he was found and had been placed under government supervision. And third one is Mr. Fang Bin, businessman, citizen-journalist and whistle-blower who used YouTube and WeChat to broadcast images of Wuhan during the COVID-19 pandemic. He was arrested a few times between February 1 and 9, 2020. Unfortunately, he was missing since his arrest on 9 February, 2020. It is evident that Chinese authorities are known to clamp down on activists who speak out. Further, according to one Human Rights Watch (HRW) researcher, Chinese authorities are currently “equally, if not more, concerned with silencing criticism as with containing the spread of the virus”. In this context it may be mentioned that one medical doctor, Dr. Li Wenliang, was warned not to spread “false comments” after raising the alarm about the virus earlier in December 2019. He eventually caught the virus and died. His death caused an extraordinary wave of anger, sparking an online unrest. Chinese authorities were stunned, and reacted by attempting to censor every critical comment about Dr Li’s death.
It has to be admitted that China’s action is unpredictable because1962 incident no Indians can forget as they backstabbed us. Pt. Nehru’s hands of friendship were repaid through war by killing many Indian soldiers. I feel China is dominated by Han (more than 90 percent) and not like Indian society which is totally pluralistic. We are more liberal and fully democratic. For instance, Indian Communist leader, Late Jyoti Basu immediately after the 1962 war, declared publicly at a rally “China cannot be the aggressor” which cannot be expected from a leader. Lastly, world people know how the leaders of China are behaving towards the Uighur Muslims.
The following websites were consulted while writing the article: