Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday said that India wants a solution to the border dispute with China through dialogue. He emphasized that the government would not allow the sanctity of borders to be violated. ÂThe Modi government has made it clear to the forces that any unilateral action on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) should not be ignoredÂ, he said.
The defence minister said that there have been “perception differences” on the border with China. “Despite this, there are some agreements, protocols which the armies of both countries follow to conduct patrols.” Referring to the clashes in eastern Ladakh last year, Singh said Chinese forces had ignored the “agreed protocols.”
Singh was delivering virtually the third Balramji Dass Tandon Memorial Lecture organized by Panjab University on the issue of national security.
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.
Today, Rajnath Singh said the Army is trained to press the trigger on seeing the movement of the enemy, but the Indian Army has shown both courage and restraint while working with great maturity. India has learned a lot from the 1962 war against China, he added.
On improving infrastructure, he said that the Atal Tunnel project in Rohtang, which was on hold for a long time, was completed by the Modi government. ÂThis tunnel has strategic importance,” he said.