'Take Nation Into Confidence': Opposition Presses for Talks on Latest India-China Clash in Parl

'How many soldiers have been injured? What is their condition? Why can't the Parliament extend their public support to the soldiers to send a strong message to China?' Asaddudin Owaisi tweeted.

New Delhi: Opposition parties including Congress and the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen have called on the Union government to take the nation into confidence by discussing the recent India-China troops’ clash along the Line of Actual Control in the Tawang sector of Arunachal Pradesh.

The face-off on December 9 at Yangste led to “minor injuries on both sides”, the Indian Army has claimed. Indian soldiers are recuperating at a hospital in Assam’s Guwahati. The two sides are already engaged in a 30-month border standoff in eastern Ladakh.

Congress and other opposition parties have long since been seeking a discussion on the border situation in parliament. Last year, advocate and Congress MP Manish Tewari tagged Lok Sabha speaker Om Birla and Rajya Sabha chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu in a tweet in which he said that 17 questions on the India-China border situation have been disallowed by the Lok Sabha Secretariat on the “specious grounds of national security” since September 2020.

The latest clash is therefore likely to rock the parliament today with several Congress leaders and AIMIM’s Asaduddin Owaisi set to move adjournment notices in both houses to discuss it.

The Congress has also alleged that the Narendra Modi government was suppressing the border issue due to which China was acting with increasing audacity.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge said, “Again our Indian Army soldiers have been provoked by the Chinese. Our jawans fought in a resolute manner and a few of them have been injured too.”

“We are one with the nation on the issues of national security and would not like to politicize it. But the Modi government should be honest about the Chinese transgressions and the construction at all points near the LAC since April 2020.

“The government needs to take the nation into confidence by discussing this issue in Parliament,” Kharge said on Twitter, adding that “we are forever indebted to the valour and sacrifice of our soldiers”.

AICC general secretary, communications, Jairam Ramesh said the Congress has been trying to “wake up” the government on the Chinese actions on the border but it is silent in order to “protect its political image”.

“We are proud of the bravery of the armed forces. China’s actions on the border are completely unacceptable. For the last two years, we have been repeatedly trying to wake up the government, but the Modi government is trying to suppress the matter only to save its political image. The audacity of China is growing because of this,” Ramesh said in a tweet in Hindi.

“No one is bigger than the country but Modi ji is putting the country in danger to save his image…,” he alleged and said the fresh development along the LAC was worrying.

The Congress also tweeted a video of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speech made after the Galwan clash in which he had said that “no one occupied our land and no one has entered India and that none of our posts is in occupation of anyone else”.

“If this mistake had not been made. Had China been named, it would not have dared to raise its eyes towards India… There’s still time… don’t be afraid,” the Congress said while referring to the prime minister’s speech.

Congress leader Manish Tewari termed the clash as unfortunate and said it warrants a discussion in Parliament.

“The clash is unfortunate. Galwan 2020 was in Eastern Ladakh – this is Tawang Arunachal Pradesh extreme North-East.

“Chinese military posture and political disposition qua India especially after the 20th Congress of CCP warrants a full discussion in Parliament,” Tewari tweeted.

Shashi Tharoor also said, “I’ve long argued that China has designs on Tawang, since they want to pre-empt the possibility of a future Dalai Lama being identified at the birthplace of the 6thDL. Proud of our soldiers for standing up to the PLA”.

Congress leader Randeep Surjewala said in a tweet in Hindi, “Had the PM acted against China (after Galwan clash) rather saving his image, China would not have had the audacity to clash with Indian troops again.”

Hyderabad MP Owaisi said he has submitted a notice for adjournment motion in Lok Sabha on the clash.

Alleging that the Union government has kept the country in the dark, Owaisi had earlier said the “weak political leadership” under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has led to “this humiliation against China”.

“The reports coming from Arunachal Pradesh are worrying and alarming. A major clash took place between Indian and Chinese soldiers and the government has kept the country in the dark for days. Why was the Parliament not informed, when it is in session?” Owaisi tweeted.

In another tweet, Owaisi said: “The army is capable of giving a fitting reply to the Chinese at any time. It is the weak political leadership under Modi which has led to this humiliation against China. This needs an urgent discussion in Parliament. I will be giving an Adjournment motion tomorrow on this issue.”

Owaisi said the details of the incident are sketchy and in another tweet sought to know: “What was the cause of the clash? Were shots fired or was it like Galwan? How many soldiers have been injured? What is their condition? Why can’t the Parliament extend their public support to the soldiers to send a strong message to China?”

(With PTI inputs)