Punjab chief minister for strong response to Chinese intrusions

Chandigarh (IANS): Expressing anger over the violent clashes in Ladakh’s Galwan Valley leading to loss of three soldiers, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, here on Tuesday, called for a strong response to the repeated violations of the Indian territory by China.

“Our soldiers are not fair game that every few days officers and men should be killed or injured defending borders,” Singh said reacting to the development on border, which came even as the armies on the two sides were supposed to be in the process of disengagement from the past several days’ stand-off.

“It’s time now for India to stand up to these incursions that are blatant violation of our territorial rights and put a stop to such attacks on our territorial integrity,” said the Chief Minister. Every sign of weakness on the part of India would make the Chinese reaction more belligerent, he added.

While it was important to defuse the border tension and India was not in favour of war, Singh said the country couldn’t afford to show weakness and needed to take a strong stand to deter the Chinese from any further intrusions and attacks on its territories and men.

Even after beating the army commanding officer and two soldiers to death, Beijing was feigning innocence and trying to put the blame on India, accusing it of provoking the conflict through ‘unilateral actions’, the Chief Minister said.

Terming such reaction on the part of China as typical of its duplicity, he said the escalation of tensions in the Ladakh sector of the India-China border were the direct consequence of the incursion by Chinese troops into Indian territory.

The Chinese actions were in direction violation of all the treaties signed between the two countries and a brazen assault on the Indian integrity, said Singh and urged the central government to take suitable steps to send out a strong message that it would not take such attacks lying down.

Referring to the rising tensions at the Indo-Pak and Indo-Nepal borders in the recent weeks, the Chief Minister said the country was surrounded by forces seeking to destabilise its peace by taking advantage of the Covid crisis.

“Let them be warned that India will not compromise on national security at any cost, and is capable of combating external challenges even as it continues to battle the pandemic internally,” he asserted.

Paying tributes to the Galwan Valley martyrs, Singh said the whole nation stood with the army in this hour of grief.