Soldiers exchanged after melee: Singh
Former chief of army staff VK Singh, minister of state for road transport and highways, says the latest transgression by China at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) has created a trust deficit between the two Asian giants, but cautions that war should be the last resort.
Asked what would be an apt response to the Chinese aggression, Singh said in an interview: “If you’re going to tell about the response now, then the response is of no use whatsoever. I am sure the required people have been tasked to think of what can be done, what cannot be done and what measures have to be taken.”
“In the melee where there are over 600 people just jostling, scuffling, pushing and hitting each other and in a dark night some people got separated; their people on our side and our people on their side. But in the morning they were exchanged.”
Singh added: “The first thing that has been given out is to boycott Chinese goods, let’s start with this. Let’s hurt them economically... War and use of force is the last resort always and every time. When all other means fail then you resort to this. There are many means available.”
Singh’s comments come in the backdrop of outrage over the June 15 skirmish, in which Chinese troops attacked Indian troops. Singh said the situation was in control of Indian troops. “There are no intrusions. There are transgressions, not intrusions,” he said.
On the May confrontation in Pangong Tso, he said: “... this is not just a yearly feature, but happens in the summer and sometimes in the winter also...the only difference this time is that the transgression has involved a certain amount of stealth ...they’ve done things which they have never done earlier.” Singh said subsequent negotiations centred on wherever there have been transgressions such as Patrol Point 14 where “they said LAC is not this way but is a different way”.