Itanagar: The Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) on Monday questioned the “silence” of the BJP government and its leaders, both at the state and Centre level, over the recent alleged abduction of a 17-year-old youth by the Chinese army from Upper Siang district.

“Had the incident taken place in some other part of the country, it would have been a ‘national issue’, but the BJP leadership, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the external affairs minister, have not uttered a single word until now. Speak and take a stand for us once. At least say something,” APCC spokesperson Zirgi Kadu said.

The Congress leader was addressing a press conference at the Arunachal Press Club here.

Kadu said an Arunachalee boy is being abducted at gun point from Indian Territory by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) but no one cares. “However, even minor incidents that take place in other parts of the country would gain national importance and get discussed for days or even weeks and months.”

“No one is taking the matter seriously, neither the national media nor the Union government. This clearly shows that the Prime Minister Modi-led BJP government is neglecting Arunachal,” Kadu said.

Miram Taron (17), a native of Zido village in Upper Siang district, was allegedly abducted by the PLA on January 18 from Lungta Jor area near Bishing village in Upper Siang district where he had gone hunting along with his friend Jhonny Yaying (27).

Yaying had reportedly managed to escape the abduction.

The PLA had on Sunday conveyed to the Indian Army that they had “found a boy” in their territory and would hand him over soon.

The Congress spokesperson also questioned the absence of Union Law Minister and Arunachal West MP Kiren Rijiju and his stand on the abduction.

“He (Rijiju) was the one who used to talk about China and the stapled visa issue all the time but he himself has gone missing now. The people and civil societies should question his absence and his stand on the same,” Kadu said.

China claims Arunachal Pradesh to be a part of South Tibet and, therefore, a part of China and issues stapled visas to the state’s citizens.

The Congress further demanded the safe return of Taron before Republic Day.

“As per media reports, the Chinese PLA has confirmed finding the boy, and the Indian government should ensure his safe return before Republic Day. We also have full faith in our Indian Army and believe that they will take the necessary action for his safe return home,” Kadu said.

The Congress has urged the Central and state governments to take strong measures to protect the country’s territory, especially in border areas, so that no such incident is repeated in the future.

“This is not the first time that such an incident of abduction has taken place in Arunachal, so the government must make sure that it is not repeated and that no one is able to illegally intrude into Indian soil,” Kadu said.

In September 2020, five youths were allegedly abducted by the Chinese army from the Sera-7 area of Nacho circle in Upper Subansiri district. They were released a few days later.

Also read: China sends 39 warplanes toward Taiwan, largest in new year

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