Since early May, the Chinese side has been amassing a large contingent of troops and armaments along the LAC, ...Read More
NEW DELHI: India warned China on Thursday that failure to implement the disengagement understanding on the LAC in eastern Ladakh would have consequences as a continuation of the current situation would have a negative impact on development of the bilateral relationship.
, the ministry of external affairs clearly indicated that the ground situation along the LAC could not linger on indefinitely and said, "We expect the Chinese side to sincerely follow up on this understanding and ensure expeditious restoration of peace and tranquillity in border areas. A continuation of the current situation would only vitiate the atmosphere for development of the relationship."
China amassing troops since May: MEA
The statement added, “At the heart of the matter is that since early May, the Chinese side has been amassing a large contingent of troops and armaments along the LAC. This is not in accordance with the provisions of our various bilateral agreements.”
In what might be the sharpest criticism of Chinese behaviour in the past few weeks, MEA spokesperson
said, “The conduct of Chinese forces this year has been in complete disregard of all mutually agreed norms. It is a reasonable expectation that patrols will not be obstructed in the discharge of their legitimate duties.”
The reference was to Indian patrolling routes along the LAC, including in areas like Depsang, Galwan Valley and Pangong Tso. Once again, India set out its red lines that peace and tranquillity on the border was the basis of the bilateral relationship, indicating that it might be prepared to upend other aspects of the relationship if China could not maintain restraint on the boundary. The Indian statement's wording, though mild compared to the belligerence displayed by
earlier this week, was unambiguous.
Clearly responding to the Chinese foreign ministry’s harsh criticism of the MEA earlier, Srivastava said, “It is clearly established that it has been Chinese actions thus far which have led to increase in tension in the region and also to the violent face-off of June 15 with casualties.” He added that in early May, Chinese troops started to “hinder India's normal, traditional patrolling pattern in
the Galwan Valley
area”. While this was addressed locally, Chinese troops attempted to change the status quo in other parts of the western sector in mid-May, he added.
Placing the responsibility of the Galwan Valley clashes squarely on China, the MEA said Beijing was expected to abide by the agreements reached on June 6 but “sought to erect structures just across the LAC”. “When this attempt was foiled, Chinese troops took violent actions on June 15 that directly resulted in casualties,” it added. India’s “counter-deployment”, the MEA said, was only in response to Chinese behaviour.
For the first time, the MEA put on record that Chinese behaviour on the LAC had been becoming more aggressive and violative of understandings and agreements. “Unfortunately, we have experienced in the last many years, obstruction to patrolling that often accompany efforts to unilaterally change the status quo,” the ministry said.
It said Chinese deployment of “large body of troops and changes in behaviour has also been aggravated by unjustified and untenable claims”. The recent shift in the Chinese position on the Galwan Valley was one example, it added.