New Delhi: Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday addressed the India-China border dispute on the second day of the ongoing Monsoon Session and said that the issue along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) still remains unsolved. Also Read - Parliament Adjourns Sine Die, Monsoon Session Cut Short by Eight Days Over Coronavirus Concerns
“Till now, there has been no mutually acceptable solution. China disagrees on the border,” the Defence Minister said in the Lok Sabha today. Also Read - Monsoon Session Updates: Congress Leader Ghulam Nabi Azad Meets President Kovind to Discuss Farm Bills
“China continues to be in illegal occupation of approximately 38,000 sq. km in Ladakh. In addition, under the so-called Sino-Pakistan ‘Boundary Agreement’ of 1963, Pakistan illegally ceded 5,180 sq. km. of Indian territory in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir to China,” he added. Also Read - India, China Agree to Stop Sending Troops to Frontline Border in Ladakh; to Continue Military Level Talks
Singh noted that India wants a peaceful resolution but China “doesn’t recognise the traditional and customary alignment of the Line of Actual Control (LAC)”.
“We consider that this alignment is based on well established geographical principals. Any activity at the LAC will impact the relationship between the two countries,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Congress MPs staged a collective walkout as the government failed to explain the reality of what is actually transpiring along the border. “They curtailed discussion because they don’t have any answers,” said Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury.
Highlighting the series of discussions on diplomatic and military levels held between the two nations, the Defence Minister said that China’s attempts to unilaterally alter the status quo were in “violation of the bilateral agreements”.
“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,” he said, adding that India was ready to deal with any further altercation.
His speech comes amid a staunch investigative report by The Indian Express that claims a “hybrid warfare” where the Chinese Communist Party is keeping an eye over 10,000 Indian individuals and organisations in its global database of “foreign targets”.
Notably, the Indian Army inducted the second batch of the mega Rafale fleet earlier this month amid the border standoff in Ladakh.
India and China have been locked in a tense standoff in multiple areas along the LAC in eastern Ladakh for over four months. The tension escalated after China unsuccessfully attempted to occupy Indian territory in the Southern Bank of Pangong lake when the two sides were engaged in diplomatic and military talks to resolve the festering border row.