Written byShalini Ojha
Endorsing what the government's supporters have been saying after 59 Chinese apps were banned this week, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Thursday said India conducted a "digital strike" with the surprise move.
He made these remarks during a virtual rally in West Bengal. He also claimed the toll on China's side, after the clash in Galwan Valley, was double that of India's.
On Monday, the government said it has banned 59 Chinese apps, including the hugely popular ones like TikTok, SHAREit, and CamScanner. The government called these apps "prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defense of India, the security of the state and public order."
The decision was taken weeks after the violent clash at the Galwan Valley, in which 20 Indian soldiers were martyred.
The move was, naturally, hailed by the government's cheerleaders. They said the government has hit China where it hurts the most. Similarities were drawn to the 2016 surgical strike and last year's Balakot airstrikes.
Taking the same tone, Prasad said, "India knows how to look in the eyes of those eyeing our borders and to protect countrymen, India can even do a digital strike."
Prasad went on to say, "Now you can hear about only two Cs — Coronavirus and China. We believe in peace and (want to) solve problems through discussion, but if somebody casts an evil eye on India, we will give a befitting reply."
Moreover, Prasad said China suffered more casualties. "If our 20 jawans have sacrificed their lives, then the toll is double on the Chinese side," he said, pointing towards the fact that Beijing hasn't released the death toll yet.
He said when Prime Minister Narendra Modi says soldiers' sacrifices won't go in vain, he means it.
"Our government has the will to deliver," Prasad announced.
Further, Prasad asked Trinamool Congress, which governs Bengal, why can't it support the Centre on key matters like national security.
He was hinting towards the reaction of MP Nusrat Jahan, who called the ban an impulsive decision claiming that people would suffer like they did after demonetization.
"What's the strategic plan? What about the people who will be unemployed?" she asked the government.
"We are witnessing a strange trend in Bengal; the ruling TMC had earlier asked why we were not banning the apps, now they want to know why we are banning the apps. This is strange," Prasad exclaimed.
While the ministers are busy promoting the move as a win against China, TikTok India Chief Nikhil Gandhi earlier revealed the government has called the platform for a discussion.
"We have been invited to meet with concerned government stakeholders for an opportunity to respond and submit clarifications," Gandhi said on Tuesday.
However, he didn't clarify when the meeting will happen.
Love Politics news?
Subscribe to stay updated.