New Delhi: Continuing its attack on the NDA government on the India-China border stand-off, the Congress Party on Saturday demanded that Prime Minister Narendra Modi ”clear the air on the present situation at LAC and condemn brazen Chinese incursions”.
Addressing a digital press conference here, senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal said, ”Tragically, China has erected tents and structures near PP-14 in Galwan Valley. This is the point where our 20 jawans led by Co B Santosh Babu of 16 Bihar Regiment were martyred on June 15-16.
Satellite imagery also reflect construction of new black top roads by Chinese forces on the Galwan Riverbed, erection of large number of military tents and presence of bulldozers and other heavy equipment. What is our Government doing about it? The PM must clear the air and condemn these brazen Chinese incursions?”
He said, ” The satellite imagery, analysis of the same by Army Generals and security experts also reflect pre and post 6th June, new constructions including new bunkers and fortifications by the Chinese in Indian territory between Finger-4 and Finger-8 in the Pangong Tso Lake Area.”
”On 19th June, the Prime Minister made a sensational claim in the all-party meeting by unequivocally stating that- “No one has intruded into our territory. No one is present in our territory. None of our posts are in possession of anyone,” Mr Sibal said.
”On June 17, the External Affairs Minister not only admitted that the Chinese had crossed the LAC but that they had and built structures in Galwan Valley on our side of the LAC. The External Affairs Ministry in two separate statements dated June 20 and , 25 admitted repeated Chinese incursions in May-June. There was no occasion for the Prime Minister at the all-party meet to have made a statement inconsistent with established facts. It has lead people to question his commitment to the truth,” the senior Congress leader said.
”China has now intruded into and occupied Indian territory in Depsang Plains up to Y-Junction, 18 kilometres into Indian territory across the LAC. China is now intruding/obstructing Indian patrolling at PP-10, PP-11, PP-11A, PP-12 and PP-13. Chinese forces are now 7 kilometres short of the Ladhaki town of Burtse on the DBO road. Incidentally, the Y-junction is 25 kilometres from the strategically most important Indian airstrip i.e. Daulat Beg Oldi Airstrip, putting it within artillery range.
”The DBO Airstrip is the lifeline for army supplies to Siachen as also movement of troops up to Karakoram Pass. This is the same area which was occupied by the Chinese in 2013.
”Congress-led UPA after a three week face-off had restored the status quo ante and pushed the Chinese back from Y-Junction. This time around the PM has sadly even refused to acknowledge Chinese intrusions.
”General DS Hooda, the former Army Commander and several security experts have now examined the satellite imagery and confirmed Chinese occupation of the Galwan Valley. Incidentally, since 1962 till date, India has always claimed and occupied the Galwan Valley as its territory. The Chinese had never laid claim to it,” Mr Sibal said.
”It is not too late for the PM to retract his ill-advised misstatements. When India’s security is an issue, no Prime Minister should hesitate to state facts to build trust. Otherwise the Chinese will use his statement to their advantage which will hurt us persuading our friends globally.
The nation must always come first,” he added.