Defence

The Deployment of forces in LAC is Abnormal: S. Jaishankar

The minister also pointed out the economic challenge that the country is facing due to the “neglect of the manufacturing and infrastructure sectors in the previous years”.

S. Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister spoke about the Galwan Clash that led to the deployment of the forces in the Line of Actual Control (LAC), he called this deployment “Abnormal”. He stated at an event hosted by the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC), highlighting that the security of the country should not be disregarded.

Jaishankar said that, in past, there was a clear understanding of India-China relations which has been affected in recent times. “After 1962, Rajiv Gandhi went to China in 1988 in many ways that were the key step towards normalising the ties (with China)… there was a clear understanding that we will discuss our boundary differences but we will maintain peace and tranquillity on the border. And the rest of the relationship will carry on,” Jaishankar said.

“What changed now is what happened in 2020. In 2020, the Chinese, in violation of multiple agreements, brought a large number of forces to our border and they did it at the time when we were under Covid lockdown,” he said.

The Galwan clash led to the deployment of forces on both sides and a total of 20 Indian soldiers died in the clash. Which is regarded as the worst clash in the last four decades in LAC.

It has been four years since the force was deployed in the LAC and that too ahead of the normal base position in the valley “This is a very abnormal deployment along the LAC. Given the tension between the two countries… As Indian citizens, none of us should disregard the security of the country… it is today a challenge,” he said.

The minister also pointed out the economic challenge that the country is facing due to the “neglect of the manufacturing and infrastructure sectors in the previous years”. 

“Why is Indian business buying so much from China… Is it good to be dependent on some other source?” Jaishankar asked.

Jaishankar further said that there is a big economic security debate going on around the world. “Countries feel today that many core businesses must stay within the country. The supply chain should be shorter and reliable… In the sensitive sectors, we will be careful… There is a national security obligation,” he said.

He cherished the positive India-Russia relationship calling it a good economic factor as Russia has rich natural resources such as oil, coal and metals of various kinds that India can obtain.

He also appreciated India’s achievements in the last 10 years with the GDP expected to touch $5 trillion in the next few years. “Today, the economic growth rate is a source of hope for all. India has returned to a high growth path and emphasis has been given to building infrastructure and revival of manufacturing,” Jaishankar said.

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