Chinese experts from various educational institutions have appreciated Sitharaman’s initiative to advance goodwill. “The greeting sent a goodwill signal towards mending bilateral ties and putting relations back on track toward normality,” Qian Feng, an expert at the Chinese Association for South Asian Studies was quoted as saying by Global Times. The defence minister’s friendly gestures also went down well with the director of the Institute of South and Southeast Asian and Oceania Studies in Beijing, Hu Shisheng. “Although leaders of the two countries are exploring more cooperation, the focus and priority of the two countries is to avoid friction and conflict,” said Shisheng.
“I am happy to see this peaceful scene,” wrote a blogger named Zhui Zhui. A user on Sina Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, even commended Sitharaman’s handling of border issues. “The Indian woman defence minister directly faced the tough border problem. Such a brave woman,” the user was quoted as saying by a leading English daily. Another source was quoted as saying by the Times of India that Sitharaman was indeed brave as there is no woman in the senior ranks of the Communist Party and government in China.