India will "burn" itself if it uses the "Tibet card" and the Dalai Lama to exercise pressure on China amid the military standoff between the two countries in the Sikkim sector, Chinese media on Monday said.
The state media was making a reference to India's plans of hoisting the Tibetan flag on the shores of a lake in Ladakh. India has also allowed the Tibetan government-in-exile to perform rituals on the eve of Dalai Lama's birthday on the shore of the Pang Gong Lake on its disputed boundary with China.
"Tibetan national flag, a pro-independence symbol adopted by the Tibetan government-in-exile" was hoisted on the the Bangong lake, known as Pangong lake in India, near the Sino-India border, the Chinese media said while quoting the Indian media.
The lake in question in Ladakh is considered strategic as the Line of Actual Control (LAC) cuts through the water body. The LAC defines the boundaries between two nations.
"It's the first time the Tibetan exile administration in northern India has flown the flag at this location," the nationalistic Global Times said in an article.
"If New Delhi is pulling the strings of the Tibetan exiles' political act of flag-hoisting, it will only have burned itself. Both border issues and the Tibet question concern China's core interests and China won't yield to provocations," the state media said, according to Hindustan Times.
"When the Indian government attaches great importance to its relationship with China, it keeps a tight grip on anti-China political activities on its soil. However, when it is dissatisfied or has conflicts with Beijing, the Tibet card is played up. But India may overestimate the influence of Tibetan exiles," the article added.
The article also warned: "Given the ongoing border spat, the Indian government should act prudently to avoid escalating tensions. It has the responsibility to control Tibetan exiles and their anti-China activities on Indian soil."
The article also said that New Delhi should "think more" about how to simmer down the standoff between the two countries, and that the nation "cannot afford to mess up the China-India bilateral relationship."
"China is India's biggest trading partner. For India, with a vast population living in poverty, peace and opportunities of development are of vital importance. New Delhi cannot afford to mess up the China-India bilateral relationship," it added.
Tibetans living in exile in India and the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, are very sensitives issues for India. Tibet is an autonomous region of the People's Republic of China in the Tibetan Plateau, while China considers the Dalai Lama a separatist and believes that he is set to split China.