On Saturday, S Jaishankar External Affairs Minister said that India was actually being tested during the seven-month-long border standoff with China in eastern Ladakh. He even expressed his confidence that India will rise to the occasion and meet the national security challenge.
The minister in an interactive session at the FICCI’s annual general meeting said that the clash which happened was not actually in China’s interest as it has significantly impacted the public sentiment in India.
He called the “events” along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) as very disturbing and that they have raised some very “basic concerns.” Jaishankar was also asked whether there will be a long-haul or a breakthrough shortly. To this, he replied, “I would not go into prediction zone at all whether it is going to be easy or not, and what will be the timelines and so on.”
He added that he has seen the evolution of how the Indian public feels about China over the last many decades, and hence he is old enough to remember much more difficult days in his teen years. He stated that a lot of work and effort was put into developing a relationship on both sides. Hence the recent events of this year have not helped at all. He added that the real danger is that the “goodwill which was so carefully developed will dissipate.”
The minister believes that India is definitely being tested and that they will put the best foot forward to rise to meet the national security challenge, but beyond that, he would keep his own counsel.
Since early May, the armies of India and China are locked in a tense border standoff in eastern Ladakh. Additionally, both sides have held multiple rounds of diplomatic and military talks with no breakthrough in sight as of now.
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