India-China clash: Capable of giving fitting reply, says Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday reacted to the recent escalations along the India-China border saying that the sacrifices of our soldiers will not go to waste. Modi said that although India wants peace, it is capable of giving a fitting reply when provoked. The statement comes after 20 soldiers were martyred in the clash along the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
Before starting the scheduled meeting with Chief Ministers over the coronavirus crisis, PM Modi observed a two-minute silence as a tribute to the soldiers. He said, "I would like to assure the nation that the sacrifice of our jawans will not be in vain." He then said that India should be proud to know that the soldiers died fighting the Chinese.
Speaking during the meeting, PM Modi said, "For us, India's unity and sovereignty is of the utmost importance and no one can stop us from protecting it." The PM added, "No one should have any misunderstandings or doubts that India wants peace. But when provoked, India is capable of giving a fitting reply to any kind of situation."
Indian and Chinese forces had faced off near Patrolling Point 14 in the Galwan Valley area of Eastern Ladakh on Monday night. The latest escalation came after a month-long standoff between the two forces at key locations along the LAC. In early-May, the two sides had clashed near the Pangong Tso lake after China opposed the construction projects undertaken by India.
The Indian Army had initially said that three soldiers, including a Colonel, had been martyred during the clash. The Army then confirmed that 17 more Indian soldiers who had sustained critical injuries died as they were "exposed to sub-zero temperatures" in the high-altitude terrain. Army sources told NDTV that there had been 43 casualties on the Chinese side during the clash.