Withdraw statement on Galwan Valley: Gehlot to PM Modi

Jaipur, Jun 28 (PTI) Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Sunday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to withdraw his statement at an all-party meeting, claiming that he had given a certificate to China that it did not intrude into Indian territory or capture any post.

'The prime minister should tell the people of the country what happened on the border,' Gehlot told reporters at a video conference while referring to the Ladakh's Galwan Valley clash between soldiers of both countries.

Twenty Indian Army personnel were killed in the clash.

'The way the PM told the opposition at the meeting that China did not intrude into our land and capture any post, he knowingly or unknowingly gave a certificate to China, which it wanted. This is a blunder from him and not required. He should withdraw his statement,' the Congress leader said.

At the June 19 meeting to discuss the situation along the India-China border, Modi said, 'Neither is anyone inside our territory nor is any of our post captured.' The Congress later said the remark implied that there was no Chinese intrusion at all. The Prime Minister's Office termed this a 'mischievous interpretation' of the Modi's statement.

'The prime minister's observations that there was no Chinese presence on our side of the LAC pertained to the situation as a consequence of the bravery of our armed forces,' the PMO clarified.

Gehlot claimed that the Chinese government and media welcomed the PM's statement. He is the only PM whose statement is being welcomed by China, Gehlot alleged.

Gehlot also sought a clarification from PM Modi about why neighbouring countries are 'against' India 'despite good international relations'.

He said in 2014, the Narendra Modi government had then invited heads of neighbouring countries, which was was a good initiative.

'What reason has been there that in a short period, the mood of all neighbouring countries is against us,' he asked.

He said it is the right of the people of the country to know the actual status on the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

'Isn't it a moral responsibility of the PM to take the people of the country in confidence and clarify the status on the LAC,' he asked.

The CM said till date, the countrymen do not know exactly how many soldiers were killed or injured; how much area has been occupied by the Chinese; and what is the situation there or how much construction is happening.

He said the Chinese action on LAC is beyond comprehension due to the kind of relations the PM had with China.

He went to China four times as a chief minister and five times as a PM and in general met the Chinese premier 18 time, Gehlot said.

In Ahmedabad, they enjoyed swings even during a conflict on the border, Gehlot said, adding that PM Modi should have understood their intentions.

The Chief Minister said the Opposition is with the government and the PM without any pre-conditions but the situation that developed 'despite good relations' is a matter of concern.

'Why the PM is hesitating in telling the exact status that where they (China) will do the construction in Galwan Valley. Why are they not telling it,' Gehlot asked. PTI AG RDK RDK