Unrelenting in his attacks on the centre over the Ladakh clash in which 20 Indian soldiers were killed, Rahul Gandhi tweeted today that it is "crystal clear" that the government was "fast asleep" and jawans paid the price. He posted the fresh charge hours before an all-party meeting on the India-China that his mother and Congress president Sonia Gandhi is expected to attend.
"It's now crystal clear that: 1. The Chinese attack in Galwan was pre-planned. 2. GOI was fast asleep and denied the problem. 3. The price was paid by our martyred Jawans," the Congress leader tweeted, sharing a report quoting junior defence minister Shripad Naik as saying the attack was planned.
In an interview to news agency ANI, Mr Naik had said: "It is a matter of national security, there will be no compromise. We will not allow others to take our land. I pay tribute to all jawans who lost lives. The nation is proud of them that they made the supreme sacrifice. It won't go in vain. It was pre-planned by China and Indian forces will give a befitting reply."
The minister also said: "We were in talks with Chinese officials. Soldiers of both sides have demarche 2.5 KM. It is sad that China has attacked our soldiers in our territory and their soldiers have also been killed."
Yesterday, Rahul Gandhi had posted that soldiers were sent "unarmed to martyrdom". He was fact-checked by Foreign Minister S Jaishankar, who said soldiers always carry arms but the rules of engagement do not allow use firearms during face-offs.
Indian soldiers were assaulted with iron rods and clubs wrapped in barbed wire laced with nails in the fight with the Chinese in Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh, close to the Line of Actual Control. Many were thrown off a steep ridge and some of the soldiers fell into the river Galwan.
Mr Jaishankar told his China counterpart Wang Yi the incident would have a serious impact on the bilateral relationship and China must take corrective steps. But both ministers agreed that "neither side would take any action to escalate matters."