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‘Locations you are referring to were under Chinese occupation since very long Congress regimes’: Kiren Rijiju schools Rahul Gandhi

Rahul Gandhi's great-grandfather, Jawaharlal Nehru was the Prime Minister of India in 1959.

A day after several media reports claimed that China has built a village on Arunachal Pradesh territory it occupied decades ago, senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi attempted to use the opportunity to take a dig at PM Modi. In a Twitter post, Gandhi insinuated that PM Modi has not kept his promise of “main desh jhukne nahin dunga(I won’t let the country down)”.

The Gandhi scion shared a screenshot of a report which said that after Ladakh, China is all geared up to touch off a conflict in Arunachal Pradesh. The report stated that China has built a village inside the Indian territory. Gandhi, in his tweet, implied that PM Modi and the Centre have failed in reining in China’s expansionist impulses.

While Gandhi tried to score brownie points by taking a swipe at PM Modi, Union Minister Kiren Rijiju acquainted him with the unpleasant fact that the land on which China has built a village was occupied by it several decades ago, under the Congress regime. Rijiju wondered how a national leader like Rahul Gandhi be so far removed from sensitive facts such as China’s occupation of territories of Arunachal Pradesh while Congress was in power at the centre.

“Those locations you are referring to have been under Chinese occupation since very-very long Congress regime in India. How can a national leader is ignorant and unaware of sensitive facts?” Rijiju tweeted.

China has built a village on Arunachal Pradesh land it illegally occupied in 1959

China has built a village on a land that was occupied by the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) after overrunning an Assam Rifles post in 1959 along the frontier in Arunachal Pradesh and not on the territory controlled by India.

According to the sources quoted by The Print, the village along the contentious border in upper Subansiri district was on the territory controlled by China. They have, for years, maintained an Army post in the region and the various constructions undertaken by the Chinese have not happened in a fortnight.

The area was captured by China in 1959 in an operation known as Longju incident. The incident had its roots in the Tibetan rebellion that broke out on 10 March 1959 and which was brutally suppressed by the Chinese PLA. The 14th Dalai Lama escaped and entered Indian territory on March 31 along with his followers, and was subsequently granted political asylum in India.

This had reportedly upset the Chinese, who thought India was behind the Tibetan rebellion and was committed to securing ‘Tibetan independence’. A book “1962 War – The Unknown Battles: Operations in Subansiri and Siang Frontier Divisions”, authored by retired major generals G.G. Dwivedi and P.J.S. Sandhu noted that the Indian post at Longju annoyed the Chinese and in a note dated 23 June 1959, they alleged that the Indian troops had intruded and occupied Migyitun and some other places in Tibet.

Following this suspicions, the Chinese PLA troops clashed with the Indian Army forces and overran the Indian post at Longju on 25 August 1959. The book further adds that since the incident the post has never been reoccupied by the Indian Forces and continued to remain under the Chinese occupation. Over the years, they had steadily built infrastructure in the region.

Rahul Gandhi’s great-grandfather, Jawaharlal Nehru was the Prime Minister of India in 1959.

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