A senior BJP leader on Sunday took aim at China over its decision to “rename” some places in Arunachal Pradesh and wondered if India should also do the same with those places which currently fall inside the neighbouring country but used to have Indian connections.

BJP vice president Baijayant ‘Jay’ Panda sought people’s votes on his view on Twitter in what appears to be a pointed rebuff to China from India’s ruling party over its recent provocation.

He said, “China has reportedly ‘renamed’ some places inside our Arunachal Pradesh. So, based on long standing historical Indian connections & identity, I wonder whether we shouldn’t do the same to places that today happen to be inside the current boundaries of China? Please read & vote.” When the Han empire annexed Yunnan 2,000 years ago, there was an Indian settlement there called Shendu. Let’s start referring to that area as Sindhu Nagar? he said.

“Eight hundred years ago, there was a Tamil settlement in what is now Quanzhou city, with more than a dozen temples. Perhaps we should refer to it as New Kanchipuram?” he said.

The famous Mogao caves in today’s Gansu province have many Indian style murals & sculptures. How about we call it Ajanta East, Panda posed.

“Today’s Xinjiang province was only named thus in the 19th century after splitting Turkestan with Russia. But until a thousand years ago, a part of it (the Tarim Basin) was Indic in culture, a thriving part of the Sanskritic world where the people spoke Gāndhārī language. Let’s call it Gandharva Pradesh?” he posed.

India has last week outrightly snubbed China after it renamed some places in Arunachal Pradesh, asserting that the state is an integral part of India and assigning “invented” names does not alter this reality.

India’s reaction came in response to Beijing announcing Chinese names for 11 more places in Arunachal Pradesh which the neighbouring country claims as southern part of Tibet.