NEWS
15/09/2020 3:53 PM IST | Updated 15/09/2020 4:04 PM IST

Rajnath Singh In Parliament: 'Chinese Troops' Violent Conduct Violated Agreement, Border Issue Unresolved'

The Defence Minister also said that heavy casualties were inflicted on the Chinese side in the 15 June face-off in Galwan Valley.

Hindustan Times via Getty Images

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday addressed the Parliament on the India-China border situation and said the violent conduct of Chinese troops in a violation of all past agreements. 

He said that the India-China border issue remained unresolved and there had been no mutually acceptable solution till now.

Both the countries agree that maintaining peace and tranquility at the border was important to develop bilateral ties, he added. 

“We have told China through diplomatic channels that the attempts to unilaterally change the status quo are not acceptable,” Singh said.

The Union Minister also said that Indian and Chinese troops engaged in a violent face-off on 15 June in Galwan in which Indian forces inflicted heavy casualties on Chinese forces.    

Singh said that China engaged in provocative actions on 29 and 30 August on the Southern Bank of Pangong Lake. 

The government’s statement comes after two rounds of bilateral political talks between the two sides earlier this month. Singh had met his Chinese counterpart Gen Wei Fenghe in Moscow on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation meet.

Singh said in the Parliament that he told his Chinese counterpart about India’s concerns over China’s aggressive behaviour and its attempts to change the status quo unilaterally. He also said there should be “no doubt about our determination to protect India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity”.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi had also met in Moscow and reached a five-point consensus to de-escalate the border situation.

Opposition leaders have repeatedly questioned the Narendra Modi government since the 15 June clash in Galwan which left 20 Indian soldiers dead. Congress MPs staged a walkout from the Lok Sabha on Tuesday, demanding a discussion on India-China border issue, according to ANI.

Congress leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury tried to raise the Ladakh standoff in the Parliament on Monday, but Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla said the Business Advisory Committee would meet on Tuesday to fix a time for discussing the issue, according to The Indian Express.

Other Congress leaders also sought a statement from the Prime Minister. “Will the Prime Minister speak on this issue? These are clarifications, we did not want debate, but, at least a clarification should be given on day one as the entire country is watching,” Deputy Leader of Congress in the Lok Sabha Gaurav Gogoi was quoted as saying by The Hindu.

On 11 September, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi tweeted that China has “taken our land” and asked what the government was doing to get it back. 

Before the commencement of Parliament’s monsoon session, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the Parliament must send out a unanimous message to the soldiers that the country stands behind them. 

Modi noted that “Indian soldiers are defending the borders with great courage and high spirits in difficult hilly terrains with snowfall expected in some time”.

“This Parliament, particularly in this session, has one more crucial responsibility... Just like the faith with which they (soldiers) are standing, determined to protect the motherland, Parliament and all its members too will send out a message in a unanimous voice, spirit and resolve that the country stands in support of them,” he was quoted as saying by PTI

The government’s statement comes just days after India banned 118 more apps with Chinese links and accused China of attempting to change the status quo in Ladakh. Both the countries have accused each other of engaging in provocative actions along the Line of Actual Control.