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External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said on Monday that despite a challenge from China, India has counter-deployed and sent a record number of troops to the border.

“I think we need to get the China issue right…Yes, there is a challenge from China, yes, it has violated agreements and sent a large number of troops to the border. But the country should take pride in the fact that, despite COVID, we counter-deployed and sent a record number of troops to the border. Those troops today are holding their own,” Jaishankar said.

Notably, Jaishankar’s remarks came during a conference held at the National Stock Exchange Plaza in Mumbai.

“The country should be supporting the military, country should not be running them down…This running down your own people, your forces is a sad thing. A lot of the country is very unhappy about it,” the EAM said.

Speaking further, he slammed the opposition for blaming PM Modi for Nehru’s actions that were taken in the past.

He said, “Indian land was taken by China between 1958-1962…When you say land taken by China, please understand that this land was lost in 1962…I see efforts made to mislead the country…”

“People are saying Chinese are building villages on the border. Where is the village built? It is built in a place called Longzu, which the Chinese attacked and occupied in 1959. There is a statement of Nehru. So, we look at the google map, look at that village and triangulate it with what Nehru said in 1959” Jaishankar said, giving an example .

“Then Rahul Gandhi and the Congress talk about the bridge in Pangong Pso in Ladakh. This bridge is being built at a place where the Chinese came in 1958 and then retook it in 1962. Recently, I saw a congress spokesperson say the Chinese have built a road in Shaksgam Valley, and this has great concerns for Siachin,” he said.

“Possibly it has concerns for Siachin,” he noted, however, adding that the “Shaksgam Valley was allowed by Nehru to be part of Pakistan occupied Kashmir, and Pakistanis handed it over to China in 1963.”

“So Congress is holding Modi responsible for Nehru’s actions in 1949 and Bhutto’s actions in 1963. But apparently, they have no culpability…” Jaishankar said.

Amid border tensions, in March, India and China exchanged views on ways of achieving complete disengagement and resolving the issues along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Western sector of India-China border areas.

Meanwhile, India, in January this year, while reiterating its long-standing position on China, said the two countries continue to engage on the diplomatic and military sides for some sort of resolution.

“India’s position on China is very well known. It is a relationship, which is not normal, but we have had dialogues both on the military side and on the diplomatic side in October and November. And the idea is that we engage so that we can have some sort of resolution,” Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Official Spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal said during weekly media briefing previously.

The two countries have been in a military standoff for the last three years since May 2020, when the Chinese tried to aggressively alter the status quo on the Line of Actual Control.