Union minister Kiren Rijiju has shared the 2013 Parliament speech of UPA’s defence minister AK Anthony talking about the India-China border issues and took a jibe at Rahul Gandhi and other Congress leaders as Congress has been demanding a debate on the recent Tawang clash in Arunachal Pradesh. “Can somebody show this Parliament video to Rahul Gandhi and Congress leaders? Congress policy since Independence was not to develop the border areas because they believed that’s the best defence policy,” Rijiju said.
In the video, AK Anthony can be seen saying: “Independent India many India has a policy for many years that the best defence is not to develop the border. Undeveloped border is more safe than developed border. So many years, there was no construction of roads, airfields, nothing in the border areas.”
“By that time, China continued to develop their infrastructure in the border areas. So as a result, they have now gone ahead of us. Compared to us, infrastructure-wise, capability-wise in the border areas, they are ahead. I admit that. It is a part of history,” Anthony said.
The BJP and the Congress have crossed swords over the December 9 face-off between the Indian and the Chinese troops in the Tawang sector of Arunachal Pradesh. While the Congress demands a debate in Parliament, the BJP condemned Rahul Gandhi’s comment that Indian soldiers ‘were thrashed’ by China on the border.
As Parliament is seeing disruptions over the Indian-China issue, Rijiju on Wednesday said it is not good to address the border issue in Parliament as it is “sensitive”.
“In 2005, when we were in the Opposition and raised the border issue, the then leader of the House Pranab Mukherjee and PM, Manmohan Singh, said instead of discussing it in Parliament, the issue should be addressed internally as it is sensitive,” Rijiju told news agency.