Image: PTI/Representative Image
Even as the Indian Army rejected a media report of a minor faceoff with Chinese troops at the LAC, AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi opined that the situation was still worrisome. On Monday, he lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for not addressing a press briefing or answering questions in the Parliament on this issue. Claiming that China is still denying Indian access to Depsang, Gogra, Hot Springs and Demchok, he lamented that the country had been not taken into confidence about the ground reality.
Writing on Twitter, the Hyderabad MP said, "Why is the country not being taken into confidence about the ground realities? Can PM tell the country by when the status quo ante in Ladakh will be restored? Or should we just accept the fait accompli that has been created by China? Does the government even have a strategy to deal with China? Or is PR and propaganda going to be the only response?"
"It is clarified that NO such minor face-off has taken place between Indian and Chinese troops at Galwan Valley in Eastern Ladakh in the first week of May 2021 as reported. The article seems to be inspired by sources who may be trying to derail the ongoing process for early resolution of issues in Eastern Ladakh," the Indian Army clarified in a statement.
Does @PMOIndia still maintain the fiction that no one has entered India? What’s the plan for reversing ingress in Ladakh? Is PM going to continue just sitting, hiding behind excuse of “legacy issues” to accept new status quo? 2/n— Asaduddin Owaisi (@asadowaisi) May 24, 2021
The faceoff at the Line of Actual Control was exacerbated when 21 Indian Army soldiers including a Commanding Officer were martyred in the Galwan Valley on June 15, 2020, when the de-escalation process was underway. This was followed by multiple attempts of provocation by the Chinese side at the end of August. Multiple rounds of military commander-level and WMCC meetings have taken place between the two sides to resolve the crisis. Besides this, EAM S Jaishankar and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh have met their respective counterparts. So far, the armies of India and China have disengaged from two places, including north and south of Pangong Tso.
In the last few months, another meeting of the senior commanders and Working Mechanism for Consultation & Coordination on India-China Border Affairs took place. India has been looking forward to ensuring that the disengagement in the remaining areas along the LAC at the earliest. Maintaining that prolonging the situation is in neither country's interest, the MEA has reiterated that disengagement might open up the possibility of de-escalation of forces and progress in bilateral ties.