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'India has not conceded any territory, LAC not at Finger 4 but at Finger 8', Defence Ministry rebuts Rahul Gandhi’s accusations

Friday, 12 February 2021 (18:32 IST)
New Delhi: Ministry of Defence on Friday said that India has not conceded any of its territory as a result of the disengagement agreement with China.

The Defence Ministry’s statement came hours after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi held a press conference, alleging that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has “ceded” Indian territory to the Chinese.

“India has not conceded any territory as a result of this agreement. On the contrary, it has enforced observance and respect for LAC and prevented any unilateral change in the status quo,” the Defence Ministry said in a statement.

Permanent posts of both sides at the north bank of Pangong Tso are longstanding and well-established. On the Indian side, it is Dhan Singh Thapa Post near Finger 3 and on the Chinese side, east of Finger 8. The current agreement provides for cessation of forward deployment by both sides and continued deployment at these permanent posts, it added.

The Ministry reiterated that the factual position has already been clearly communicated by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in his statements to both the Houses of the Parliament.

Mr Singh had on Thursday informed the Parliament that a major breakthrough has been achieved between India and China in eastern Ladakh, with both the sides initiating disengagement of troops from the southern and northern sides of Lake Pangong, on a mutual agreement basis.

“The assertion that Indian territory is upto Finger 4 is categorically false. The territory of India is as depicted by the map of India and includes more than 43,000 sq km currently under illegal occupation of China since 1962. Even the Line of Actual Control (LAC), as per the Indian perception, is at Finger 8, not at Finger 4. That is why India has persistently maintained the right to patrol upto Finger 8, including in the current understanding with China”, the statement said.

Indian and Chinese forces are at a face-off since last May in eastern Ladakh when the Chinese troops intruded deep into the Indian side of the Line of Actual Control. (UNI)

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