Amid a standoff with China on the Ladakh border, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Sunday that India will never compromise on its “national pride”, asserting that its security capability has risen and it is no longer a “weak” country.
Speaking at a virtual ‘Jan Samvad’ rally for Jammu and Kashmir, Singh also assured the opposition that the central government will not keep Parliament or anyone in the dark about developments on the border and will share details at an appropriate time.
“I want to assure that we will not compromise with national pride under any circumstance. India has become strong in its national security.
India is no longer a weak India. Our strength has risen. But this strength is not meant to frighten anyone. If we are increasing our strength we are doing so to secure our country,” Singh said.
The Indian and Chinese armies are locked in an over five-week standoff in Pangong Tso, Galwan Valley, Demchok and Daulat Beg Oldie in eastern Ladakh. A sizeable number of Chinese Army personnel even transgressed into the Indian side of the de-facto border in several areas including Pangong Tso.
The Indian Army has been fiercely objecting to the transgressions, and demanded their immediate withdrawal for restoration of peace and tranquillity in the area. Both sides held a series of talks in the last few days to resolve the row.
The senior BJP leader said China has expressed wish to resolve the dispute with India through talks, and the Indian government also has a similar view.
“This is also our effort to defuse the tussle between India and China through military and diplomatic level talks,” he said, stating that the two countries are engaged in military level dialogue.
Referring to the row, he noted that a dispute has arisen between India and China and some people have asking “what has been happening on India-China border, in Ladakh”.
From time to time, people have been informed about the ongoing developments, he said, adding that his government appreciates the role of opposition in democracy and respects it.
The Congress, especially Rahul Gandhi, has been raising questions about the border dispute and asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to be transparent about it.
Gandhi had recently alleged that China has taken away India’s territory in Ladakh and questioned the prime minister’s silence on the issue, saying he has vanished.
Singh asserted that India is secure in its defence and is augmenting its strength, and noted that Rafale fighter aircraft will arrive in July, boosting its air firepower.