NEW DELHI: India on Tuesday rejected Chinese claims of the position of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh, saying it has never accepted the so-called unilaterally defined 1959 perception of the LAC. Under various bilateral agreements, both India and China have committed to clarification and confirmation of the LAC.
“The two sides had engaged in an exercise to clarify and confirm the LAC up to 2003, but this process could not proceed further as the Chinese did not show a willingness to pursue it. Therefore, the insistence now of the Chinese side there is only one LAC is contrary to the solemn commitments made by China in these agreements,” Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said.
The response came after China on Monday said it abides by the 1959 LAC perception of then premier Zhou Enlai. Meanwhile, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said Beijing does not recognise the Union Territory of Ladakh and accused India of illegally establishing Central rule there.
“China does not recognise the so-called Union Territory of Ladakh, which was illegally established by India, and opposes infrastructure construction in disputed border areas for military control purposes,” Wang said.
No unilateral action desired at border: MEA
The MEA spokesperson also said that neither side should take any unilateral action in border areas after the consensus that was reached between the two neighbouring countries. Hitting out at the Chinese side, Srivastava said that India has always respected and abided by the Line of Actual Control.
“In the last few months, the Chinese side has repeatedly affirmed that the current situation in the border areas should be resolved in accordance with the agreements signed between the two countries,” he said.
“In the agreement reached between the External Affairs Minister and his Chinese counterpart on September 10 also, the Chinese side has reiterated its commitment to abide by all the existing agreements.”
India and China have signed at least six agreements since 1993 to ensure peace and tranquillity along the border areas.
The MEA spokesperson said that India expected the Chinese side to sincerely and faithfully abide by all agreements and understandings in their entirety and refrain from advancing an untenable unilateral interpretation of the LAC.
Ladakh’s UT status
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said Beijing does not recognise Ladakh UT and accused India of illegally establishing Central rule there