China Changed Status Quo by Force, Withdrawal Unlikely: Tharoor

On Modi’s comments, Tharoor said that they imply he has “meekly” accepted the “new reality”, which is a “setback”.

Published20 Jun 2020, 10:58 AM IST
India
2 min read

Days after the face-off between India and China at the Galwan Valley in Ladakh that left 20 Indian personnel dead, Congress leader Shashi Tharoor said that China has "de-facto annexed disputed territory" and that "the restoration of the status quo ante (the previously existing state of affairs) is now impossible unless the Chinese withdraw," which would involve a loss of face and is unlikely.

Speaking to The Quint, a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi held an all-party meeting to discuss the border situation, Tharoor said, "... By occupying positions they had not held before in the Galwan Valley and at Pangong Tso, China has unilaterally changed the status quo by force. These are areas India claimed and used to patrol, as did China, with both sides accepting there was a different perception of where the LAC lay. These events mean that China has de facto annexed disputed territory, made it impossible for India to patrol these areas as before, and entrenched themselves in positions overlooking Indian positions and with the capacity to interdict the SBDO road."

At the all-party meeting on Friday, PM Modi had said there were no incursions into India, indicating that China did not cross the border or take over any Indian post. A day later, the PMO issued a clarification on his remarks saying his "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 statement denounced "attempts to give mischievous interpretation" to Modi's remarks at the all-party meeting on the LAC situation.

On Modi's comments, Tharoor told The Quint that they imply he has "meekly" accepted the “new reality”, which is a "setback".

“The restoration of the status quo ante is now impossible unless the Chinese withdraw, which would involve a loss of face and also looks unlikely given the equipment they have brought in and the construction activity they have started there. If India meekly accepts the new reality as the PM’s statement implies he has, it is undoubtedly a setback.”
Shashi Tharoor to The Quint

‘PM’s Statement Provides Ammunition to China’

Taking to Twitter earlier, Tharoor had said the PM's statement "unwittingly provides ammunition to the Chinese side to claim that the fighting occurred on their territory, not ours."

"This desire to put short-term domestic political messaging ahead of long-term strategic considerations is NOT in our national interest. If the PM does not know better, he should be better advised," he wrote.

A violent face-off had erupted on the night of 15 June between Indian and Chinese troops at Galwan Valley in Ladakh. While 20 Indian Army personnel were killed, many others were injured. On the Chinese side, while reports have indicated that there were many casualties, no official information has been released so far. The confrontation came after a month of build-up of tensions along the LAC between the two countries.

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