Describing China as the “biggest threat to the country”, Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav on Monday launched a blistering attack on the Congress-led UPA government for its failure to repulse the Chinese troops, who set up camp 19 km inside Indian territory in Depsang bulge in Ladakh earlier this month.
While the Samajwadi Party provides outside support to the UPA government, speaking in the Lok Sabha, Mulayam described the UPA government as “weak, cowardly and incompetent” twice over in his speech, for its failure to counter the Chinese threat effectively.
“I have been saying this... that China poses the biggest threat to the country... that Pakistan is no threat... All this has happened, but still no one listens to me,” Mulayam said, amid continuous slogan-shouting by BJP members in the Well over the coal block allocation scam.
Voicing his opposition to the Union External Affairs Minister’s proposed Beijing visit from May 9, Mulayam said angrily: “Now, Salman Khurshid is going to China. To do what? Beg before them?”
Mulayam, a former Defence Minister, charged that the Union government had tied the Army’s hands, “when the Army Chief had repeatedly stated that they were capable enough of repulsing the Chinese troops”.
“We have a brave Army. When the Army chief himself says the troops are ready to throw out the intruders, why is the government not issuing instructions to it? Why is the government demoralising our troops? They (China) humiliated us in 1962. They are humiliating us now in the world fora,” Mulayam said, in his intervention.
“The government of the day owes an answer on the issue. The Chinese troops must be thrown out. If this leads to a war, so be it. If the Prime Minister and the ministers concerned are not intervening, I would request the Chair to intervene in the matter,” added Mulayam.
Mulayam said he had raised the issue several times with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Defence Minister A K Antony, but to no avail. “I went to his (PM’s) chamber to talk to him. But no action was taken. I even hinted to Congress president Sonia Gandhi but even she did not give any direction to the government,” he said.
Yadav was supported by Bhartruhari Mahtab (BJD) and Sudip Bandyopadhyay (TMC) and other members, including Jagdambika Pal (Congress), Nama Nageswara Rao (TDP) and Suvendu Adhikari (TMC).
The mainline Opposition BJP was, meanwhile, barraged with questions that the “Samajwadi Party was trying to usurp the space that originally belonged to the BJP, for, it had failed to effectively raise the Chinese threat issue”.
BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar, however, countered the charge saying that “the party has been raising the issue since Day One, and it was only on Sunday that party president Rajnath Singh had opposed Khurshid’s proposed China visit — something that was repeated by Mulayam on Monday.”