Reveals 'huge gap' in what govt wants Indians to believe and reality: Chidambaram on divergent views on Modi-Xi conversation

08:11 AM Aug 27, 2023 | PTI |

New Delhi: Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Saturday alleged the divergent views offered by India and China to characterise the conversation between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping is not ”trivial or cosmetic” but reveals the ”huge gap” between what the government wants the Indian people to believe and the reality.


In a readout on the conversation between the two leaders in Johannesburg earlier this week, the Chinese foreign ministry said President Xi conveyed to PM Modi that both sides should ”bear in mind” the ”overall interests” of the ties and ”properly” handle the border issue.

Hours after Beijing’s statement on the Modi-Xi conversation that claimed it was held at the Indian side’s request, Indian sources said there was a ”pending request” from the Chinese side for a bilateral meeting, suggesting that New Delhi has not heeded it.

In a post on ‘X’, Chidambaram said, ”The difference between India’s statement and China’s statement after the meeting between PM Modi and President Xi is not a trivial or cosmetic difference.” This is not the first time that there has been a wide divergence between the statements of the two countries, he said.

”The difference is fundamental and reveals the huge gap between what the GoI wants the Indian people to believe and the reality,” the former Union minister said.


”The bitter reality is that China has not budged an inch from its position and Chinese troops continue to occupy Indian territory. The talk of de-escalation and disengagement is just talk in the air on the Indian side,” Chidambaram said.

This is deeply regrettable, he added.

Modi and Xi held the conversation on Wednesday on the sidelines of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) summit in Johannesburg, amid continuing strain in bilateral ties in view of the lingering border standoff in eastern Ladakh.

The conversation was not a structured bilateral meeting. While India has been maintaining that there can be no normalisation of ties between the two countries without peace along the border areas, China has been arguing that the boundary issue should not hold back overall relations.


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