External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar on Saturday said that some individuals in the opposition deliberately spread misinformation about China and that they give the impression that the land that was taken by China in 1962 was taken recently. He made these remarks during a question-answer session during the launch of Bharat Marg, the Marathi translation of his book 'The India Way', in Pune.
Jaishankar's comments were perceived as a criticism of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who had previously accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of giving 100 square kilometers of Indian territory to China without a fight.
“If you want to ask why they have no confidence, why are they misleading people, why they spread the wrong khabar (news) about China? How can I answer these questions? Because I know they are also doing politics. Sometimes they deliberately spread such news that they know is not true,” he said.
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“Sometimes, they talk about some land, which was taken by China in 1962. But they will not tell you the truth. They will give you the impression that this thing happened yesterday,” he added.
Taking a jibe at Rahul Gandhi's meeting with the Chinese ambassador in 2017 when India and China were locked in a standoff at Doklam, Jaishankar said sometimes some people say there is soch me kami (lack of understanding) in him but in that case, he will approach the military leadership, Army, or Intelligence.
“I will not call the Chinese ambassador and seek information,” he said.
Jaishankar also discussed the Indus Water Treaty (IWT), stating that it is a technical matter that will be addressed by Indus commissioners from both India and Pakistan. He emphasized that India views China as its only neighbor that is a global power and has the potential to become a superpower.
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The EAM also spoke about the importance of involving people from different states in the nation's foreign policy, rather than just listening to bureaucrats. He mentioned that one of the chapters in his book is about managing the challenges posed by having China as a neighbor.
Regarding the failure of a rogue nation (referred to as Pakistan), Jaishankar stated that India cannot choose its neighbors, just as the Pandavas could not choose their relatives. He also stressed the importance of India standing up for countries in the south and the developing world, as most developed nations only focus on their own concerns.
On the topic of terrorism, Jaishankar said that no nation has suffered as much as India due to the neighbor it has, in reference to Pakistan. He highlighted India's strong stance against terrorism and cited the surgical strikes that were conducted after the attacks in Pulwama and Uri as examples of India's determination to tackle the menace.