Tensions have been rife along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) between Indian and China. But the situation appears to be de-escalating as the two countries engage in dialogue at the military and diplomatic levels to resolve the dispute. Propaganda, too, has been flying freely regarding the situation and unfortunately, some people on the Indian side have been spreading panic painting doomsday scenarios in the public eye. One such report was published on the Indian Express on Friday.
In the said report, it was claimed that “Chinese forces have moved into Indian territory by crossing the LAC at some places in eastern Ladakh: in the Pangong Tso area, and at three separate locations in the Hot Springs sector.” ‘Highly placed sources’ were also quoted as saying that there has been extensive deployment of towed artillery and mechanised elements on the Chinese side of the LAC. Defence analyst Abhijit Iyer Mitra has now disputed the content of the report and made it clear that there has been no intrusion by Chinese forces on the Indian side of the LAC.
2n Who twisted the report to present only half the picture in today’s @IndianExpress. We certainly hope that @PMOIndia & @rajnathsingh realise that the mischievous peddling of such incomplete information is being done to force them into a specific course of action. But by whom?— Abhijit Iyer-Mitra (@Iyervval) May 29, 2020
According to Abhijit Iyer-Mitra, the Indian Express report quoted verbatim from a classified and proprietary report prepared by his colleagues. He said that the quoted report conclusively proved that there was no Chinese intrusion and yet, this critical piece of information was left out deliberately. He also said that a serious case of intellectual theft could be made against The Indian Express and accused them of “deliberate omission of relevant facts”. Abhijite Iyer-Mitra said that he had made a tweet thread earlier based on the findings of the report.
4n If the IE correspondents SAW this report with their own eyes it begs the question how they missed PROPRIETARY printed at the top of each page. This constitutes a serious case of intellectual property theft by @IndianExpress, not to mention deliberate omission of relevant facts— Abhijit Iyer-Mitra (@Iyervval) May 29, 2020
The Defence Analyst proceeded to add, “if the correspondents did NOT SEE the report, what good faith basis did @rajkamaljha have for publishing such an inflammatory report? If not plagiarism it constitutes atrocious editorial standards.” The Indian Express report emphasised on numerous occasions throughout the report that the Chinese had intruded on Indian territory as it maintained that the current situation on the ground was at a standstill while dialogue continued to proceed through appropriate channels.