Talking in parliament about the clash between Indian and Chinese troops in the Tawang sector of Arunachal Pradesh, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Tuesday, 13 December, that "no Indian troops had been killed" and the issue had been diplomatically taken up with China.
"This matter has also been taken up with China through diplomatic channels. I want to assure the House that our forces are committed to guard our borders and ready to thwart any attempt that will be made to challenge it," he added.
"On 9 December, PLA (People's Liberation Army) troops tried to transgress the LAC in Yangtse area of Tawang Sector and unilaterally change the status-quo. The Chinese attempt was contested by our troops in a firm and resolute manner. The ensuing face off led to a physical scuffle in which the Indian Army bravely prevented the PIA from transgressing into our territory and compelled them to return to their posts The scuffle led to injuries to a few personnel on both sides."Defence Minister Rajnath Singh
The Defence Minister of India further added that due to the "timely intervention of Indian military commanders, PLA soldiers went back to their locations."
"As a follow up of the incident, the local Commander in the area held a Flag Meeting with his counterpart on 11 December to discuss the issue in accordance with established mechanisms. The Chinese side was asked to refrain from such actions and maintain peace and tranquillity along the border," said Singh.
Additionally, Home Minister Amit Shah applauded the Indian soldiers and saluted their valour. "I want to say it clearly... till the time the BJP government led by Prime Minister Modi is in power, no one can capture an inch of our land," he was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
On the contrary, the opposition Congress accused the government of of hiding the truth from the nation. Addressing the reporters, deputy leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha Gaurav Gogoi, senior leader Pawan Khera demanded the defence minister Rajnath Singh to tell the truth to the people.
Accusing the Modi administration of failure in its China policy, Gogoi further added,
"We demand the government to be open and tell nation the truth. Instead, the Modi led government is trying to divert public attention by raising issues like cancellation of FCRA license of Rajiv Gandhi Foundation. Rajnath Singh may be wanting to provide more information but his voice has also been silenced by the Prime minister. That is why the minister's statement is incomplete. Our questions were valid."
Meanwile, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said that the border situation was "generally stable."
However, as per a report by AFP News Agency, the Chinese military has claimed that the Indian soldiers "illegally" crossed a disputed border in the Himalayas and "obstructed" Chinese troops, which triggered a fresh stand-off last week.
In its statment, the Indian Ministry of Defence had stated,
"Both sides immediately disengaged from the area. As a follow up of the incident, own Commander in the area held a Flag Meeting with his counterpart to discuss the issue in accordance with structured mechanisms to restore peace and tranquillity."