This comes a day after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi alleged that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has ‘ceded’ Indian territory to the Chinese.
FEBRUARY 13, 2021; The Parliamentary Committee on Defence has decided to visit Galwan Valley and Pangong in Eastern Ladakh, a day after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi alleged that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has “ceded” Indian territory to the Chinese. Interestingly, Gandhi, Sharad Pawar and Sanjay Raut are members of the panel too.
Addressing a press conference earlier, Gandhi questioned why the prime minister did not make a statement on the LAC situation, and said Defence Minister Singh “sheepishly” made a statement on the issue in both Houses of Parliament.
“Why has he asked the Defence Minister to make the statement, the Prime Minister should say – I have given Indian land to China, this is the truth,” he alleged. He said it has emerged that Indian troops are now going to be stationed at Finger 3 at Pangong Tso lake. “Finger-4 is our territory, that is where our post used to be. So, now we have moved from finger-4 to finger-3. Why has the Prime Minister Modi given up Indian Territory to the Chinese? This is the question that needs to be answered by him and by the Defence Minister,” Gandhi said.
Why have Indian troops, after the hard work that they had done in capturing Kailash ranges, been asked to move back, the Congress leader asked. What has India got in return for this? Most importantly, the more important strategic area, Depsang plains, why have the Chinese not moved back? These are the real questions. Why have they not moved from Gogra-Hot Springs, the former Congress chief asked. “It is the responsibility of the Prime Minister to protect the territory of the country. The Prime Minister has ceded Indian Territory to the Chinese. It is his responsibility to solve the problem,” he alleged.
“GOI must explain – Why our forces are withdrawing from dominant positions in Kailash Ranges? Why we are ceding our territory & withdrawing from forward base at Finger 4 to Finger 3? Why has China not withdrawn from our territory in Depsang Plains & Gogra Hot Springs,” he asked in a tweet.
After Gandhi’s attack, alleging that the government has “ceded” Indian territory to the Chinese and raised questions over the agreement, the Ministry of Defence issued a strongly-worded statement saying it has not conceded any territory as a result of the agreement finalised with China for disengagement of troops in Pangong lake areas in eastern Ladakh. It said effective safeguarding of country’s national interest and territory in the Eastern Ladakh sector has taken place because the government reposed full faith in the capabilities of the armed forces. “Those who doubt the achievements made possible by the sacrifices of our military personnel are actually disrespecting them”, the statement said.
The ministry also made certain clarifications in the statement, and said, “the assertion that Indian territory is up to Finger 4 is categorically false. The territory of India is as depicted by the map of India and includes more than 43,000 sq km currently under illegal occupation of China since 1962.” “Even the Line of Actual Control (LAC), as per the Indian perception, is at Finger 8, not at Finger 4. That is why India has persistently maintained the right to patrol upto Finger 8, including in the current understanding with China,” the MoD said.