Tuesday, November 2, 2010


You may have noticed that China has launched its equivalent of Google Earth. This website, Chinaon map, is China’s vision of the earth around the middle kingdom. As I’m a Google Earth traveller, I thought I’d better check out how China views us. Apart from Tibet and the disputed islands in the China Sea, a piece of India is also attached to China. We’ve lost Arunachal Pradesh to China in their map so I thought I’d better get over to the State Bureau of Surveying and Mapping in Beijing to tell them that their Chinaonmap has made a serious mistake. AP is an integral part of India, still, or was until I saw their map.
‘We’re very sorry for the mistake,’ the spokesperson for SBSM told me, smiling. ‘We’ll make a correction. Please remember China once reached Siberia under the great Khan.’
‘He’s long dead and gone. The correction has to be done immediately. Google Earth updates their website every few minutes. And in their map of India AP is very much part of India.’
‘Very sorry,’ spokesperson said. ‘We only update once or twice a year. Next year maybe we will look into the problem.’
I thought this was an inadequate response to my courteous protest. On returning to a India, still whole, I hoped, I went to the one of the big IT companies.
‘I want us to upload an Indiaonmap website immediately. We will then get AP back within our borders and also claim a small chunk of Chinese territory. We’ll also make Tibet an independent country on our website. And Taiwan too can be freed from China. And while we’re at it, we’ll move Beijing next to Kolkata so that the communist party will be happy to have it as their new neighbour.’
In no time at all, we launched the Indiaonmap website. AP was back in our fold and Tibet had a new border around it.
I had to show off and returned to the SBSM office in Beijing, a short hop from Kolkata and showed them our Indiaonmap site. The spokesperson was furious and very insulted that his capital was next to the Hooghly.
‘We’ll see about that,’ the spokesperson said and opened up Chinaonmap website in front of me. He moved Beijing back to its original position, reclaimed Tibet and AP. He then shifted the border further west to take a chunk of Assam. ‘This where we were in the 1962 war,’ he said. For good measure, he gave Kashmir to Pakistan and then gave it Afghanistan too.
‘Right, it’s web war,’ I told him and returned to a much truncated India with Pakistan now twice its size. I told my hi-tech guy to re-claim AP and Tibet and push a 1,000 kilometres into China. As we couldn’t allow Pakistan to claim Kashmir and Afghanistan, we moved India’s borders west to Iran. I thought this would make that gas pipe line easier to lay. We re-named the China Sea to the Asian Sea and gave all the disputed islands in that new sea to Japan. This would help our trade relations, I thought.
When I went back to SBSM, they were waiting for me as they saw what we had done on Indiaonmap. This time, Chinaonmap pushed China’s order west up to Mumbai.
‘We’re more than happy for you to have Mumbai, the RSS and the Thackeray thugs,’ I told them. As China did not want any of our thugs, SBSM decided only to move to Nagpur, which divided India in half. The Indian Ocean became the China Ocean.
Back in India, we spread the Indian Ocean across the Pacific and Atlantic too and pushed India’s borders as far west to France. Chinaonmap then spread east and included the US and South America. Neither of us wanted Britain as it was an economic black hole, and the cause of all our problems.

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