Defence minister Rajnath Singh addressed Parliament on Tuesday on India’s ongoing border row with China and said that Beijing does not “recognise the current boundary”.
Singh said that India’s armed forces have foiled the transgression attempts by China in Ladakh amid the standoff between the two countries at the Line of Actual Control (LAC). He was speaking in the Lok Sabha on the second day Monsoon Session of Parliament.
He added that Indian soldiers have laid down their lives to ensure that Chinese designs are foiled pointing to the violent standoff at the Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh in June this year, when 20 Indian Army soldiers were killed.
Here are the highlights from his speech in the Lok Sabha:
India and China agree that it is essential for the further development of bilateral relations to maintain peace and tranquillity in the border area.
India and China border issue remains unresolved and there has been no mutually acceptable solution till. China disagrees on border.
China does not recognise the traditional and customary alignment of the boundary. We consider that this alignment is based on well established geographical principals.
We have told China through diplomatic channels that the attempts to unilaterally alter the status quo were in violation of the bilateral agreements.
China has mobilised a huge number of army battalions and armaments along LAC and inner areas. There’re many friction points in eastern Ladakh, Gogra, Kongka La, Pangong Lake’s north and south banks. The Indian Army has made counter deployments in these areas.
I want to assure you that we are ready to deal with any situation.
In meeting with Chinese defence minister, I clearly stated that while our troops had always taken a responsible approach towards border management, but at same time there should be no doubt about our determination to protect India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Violent conduct of Chinese troops is a violation of all past agreements. Our troops have done counter deployments in the area to safeguard our borders.
I want to assure that the morale of our armed forces is high. No one should doubt it. The Prime Minister’s visit to Ladakh has sent a message that people of India stand behind Indian armed forces.
I request this house to pass a resolution that we stand shoulder to shoulder with our armed forces who are guarding our borders to safeguard India’s sovereignty and integrity.
The Chinese side created a violent face-off on June 15 at Galwan. Our brave soldiers laid down their lives and also inflicted costs including casualties on the Chinese side.
We have faced situations of prolonged stand-offs in border areas with China in the past as well, which were resolved peacefully. Even though the situation this year is very different both in terms of scale of troops involved and number of friction points, we remain committed to a peaceful resolution.
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