If expelling of three Chinese journalists by India is a revenge for China's opposition to its Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) membership, there will be "serious consequences", said a state - run daily urging Beijing to respond in a similar manner.
In a hard - hitting editorial, the Global Times said China "should take actions to display our reaction".
"We at least should make a few Indians feel Chinese visas are also not easy to get, " the editorial said.
The piece came in the wake of India's refusal to extend the visas of three Chinese journalists from Xinhua news agency, owned by the Chinese government.
However, the officials in India's External Affairs Ministry have said that Xinhua could always send new replacements.
"No official reason was given for the rejection of the visa renewals. Some Indian media claimed that the three journalists were suspected of impersonating other people to access several restricted departments in Delhi and Mumbai with fake names, " the editorial said.
"There were also reports attributing it to the journalists' meeting with exiled Tibetan activists. Moreover, speculation is swirling that India is taking revenge against China for the latter's opposition to India joining the NSG. "
"If New Delhi is really taking revenge due to the NSG membership issue, there will be serious consequences, " said the daily which is known for acerbic tone.
Ties between the two countries have come under pressure after Beijing opposed New Delhi's entry into the NSG which regulates the global nuclear trade.
The editorial said that India had a "suspicious mind".
It also commented that nationalism among Indians had soared in recent years.
"Indian society in recent years has witnessed soaring nationalism. Crowned by Western public opinion as the world's biggest democracy, the Indians have a strong sense of pride, " it said.
The editorial concluded by saying "China should stick to a friendly strategy toward India, as we believe bilateral friendship is in the interests of India as well. "