Congress holding PM Modi responsible for Nehru’s mistakes: Jaishankar on China issue

EAM Jaishankar took a swipe at Congress MP Rahul Gandhi for misleading the country with false narratives about border issues with China.


Published May 13, 2024 | 7:44 PMUpdatedMay 13, 2024 | 7:45 PM

EAM Jaishankar on border issue with China

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Monday, 13 May, said Congress holds Prime Minister Narendra Modi accountable for the mistakes made by first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru.

He was referring to the party’s comments on China and said that the Congress behaves like the party has no culpability for its past acts.

A Congress spokesperson said the Chinese have built a road in Shaksgam Valley and claimed this has created concerns for Siachen, the EAM said.

Responding to that comment, Jaishankar said, “Possibly it has concerns for Siachen. Shaksgam Valley was allowed by Nehru to be part of PoK and the Pakistanis handed it over to China in 1963. The Congress party is holding Modi responsible for Nehru’s actions in 1949 and for (Pakistani premier Zulfikar Ali) Bhutto’s actions in 1963 but apparently they (Congress) have no culpability.”

On Chinese belligerence in Ladakh and Arunachal Pradesh, Jaishankar said Indian land was taken by China between 1958 and 1962, and some of it before 1958 as well.

Taking a jibe at Rahul Gandhi, Jaishankar added that the Congress MP and the party are trying to mislead the country. “When you keep saying land taken by China, it was lost in 1962. I see efforts made to mislead the country,” said the EAM.

China and India have been witnessing an unease in ties, especially after the Galwan Valley incident of June 2020 when Chinese and Indian soldiers clashed, resulting in casualties on both sides. Since then India-China relations have been in an “abnormal state”, with both sides amassing their troops along the LAC.

The External Affairs Minister said Congress is claiming that the Chinese are building villages on the border, but it is in a place called Longju (along the Line of Actual Control in Arunachal Pradesh), which the Chinese attacked and occupied in 1959.

Admitting that there is a challenge from China, which has violated bilateral agreements and sent a large number of troops to the border, the EAM said one should take pride in the fact that despite the COVID-19 pandemic, India counter deployed and sent a record number of troops to the border.

Those troops today are at a great height and in great cold and are defending the country in very tough conditions, Jaishankar pointed out.

“So when I hear Rahul Gandhi (say) our soldiers were beaten in Yangtse in Arunachal Pradesh (in 2022) when (in reality) we pushed back the Chinese. Gunning down your system, your forces is a very very sad thing,” he added.

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