Waited for a year on Galwan but no clarity: Sonia Gandhi
New Delhi, June 15: Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday said that the Congress party joins a grateful nation in remembrance of the supreme sacrifice made by 20 brave soldiers of the Bihar Regiment in Galwan Valley.
"As we approach first anniversary of tragic loss of 20 brave soldiers of Bihar Regiment in the confrontation with PLA troops of China on night of June 14-15, 2020, Congress party joins a grateful nation in remembrance of their supreme sacrifice," said Sonia Gandhi in a statement.
"We have repeatedly sought details of the episode in light of PM's statement and details of what progress has been made towards restoring status quo ante prior to April 2020. Disengagement agreement with China appears to have worked entirely to India's disadvantage," she added.
"Having patiently waited for the government to come clean and inform the nation about the circumstances in which the unprecedented incident happened and reassure the people that the sacrifice of our brave jawans was not in vain, said the Congress Party.
The government to take the nation into confidence and ensure that their performance is worthy of the commitment of our soldiers, who are standing bravely and resolutely at the borders.
In the first deadly clash in the border area in nearly five decades, 20 Indian soldiers were killed on June 15 last year in the Galwan Valley in fierce hand-to-hand combat with Chinese troops, triggering a large deployment of troops and heavy weaponry by both armies at the friction points in eastern Ladakh.
In February, China officially acknowledged that five Chinese military officers and soldiers were killed in the clashes with the Indian Army though it is widely believed that the death toll was higher.
Colonel Bikumalla Santosh Babu, the commanding officer of the 16 Bihar regiment, had led from the front against the Chinese aggression near Patrolling Point 14 in Galwan Valley.
India held the neighbouring country accountable for triggering the Ladakh standoff by violating rules of engagement on border management and conveyed that peace and tranquillity along the LAC is the basis for the progress of the rest of the relationship and they cannot be separated.
Months later, Jaishankar and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi agreed on a five-point pact to resolve the row at a meeting in Moscow.
The two sides completed the withdrawal of troops and weapons from the North and South banks of Pangong lake in February following a series of military and diplomatic talks. They are now engaged in talks to extend the disengagement process to the remaining friction points.
There was no visible forward movement in disengagement of troops in the remaining friction points as the Chinese side did not show flexibility in their approach on it at the 11th round of military talks.
Last month, Army Chief Gen Naravane had said that there can be no de-escalation without complete disengagement at all friction points in eastern Ladakh and that the Indian Army is prepared for all contingencies in the region.