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India once again tells China what to do to normalise New Delhi-Beijing ties

India said that both sides should strictly respect and observe the LAC and neither side should attempt to alter the status quo unilaterally

Sending a strong message to China yet again, the Indian government on Friday said that the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh are an integral part of India and it expects other countries to respect India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Replying to a question in Parliament, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan stated that India has taken note of a bridge being constructed by China on Pangong lake in areas that have continued to be under the illegal occupation of China since 1962.

"Government of India has never accepted this illegal occupation," he said.

Emphasising that India and China have maintained dialogue through both diplomatic and military channels with regard to disengagement in the remaining areas along the LAC in Eastern Ladakh, the minister said that New Delhi's approach is guided by three key principles.

Firstly, both sides should strictly respect and observe the LAC; neither side should attempt to alter the status quo unilaterally; and all agreements between the two sides must be fully abided by in their entirety.

The last round of talks between the Senior Commanders of India and China was held on January 12. They agreed that both sides should follow the guidance provided by their leaders and work for the resolution of the remaining issues at the earliest as this would help in restoration of peace and tranquility along the LAC in Eastern Ladakh and enable progress in bilateral relations.

The government once again reiterated that the renaming of some places by China in the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh is a futile exercise that will not alter the fact that Arunachal Pradesh has always been, is and will always be an integral part of India.

The MEA said that the Narendra Modi government continues to give specific attention to the improvement of infrastructure for the development of border areas in order to facilitate the economic development of these areas as also to meet India’s strategic and security requirements.

"Government also keeps a constant watch on all developments having a bearing on India’s security and takes all necessary steps to ensure that our security interests are fully protected," the minister said in his reply.

Also Read: ‘Guidance’ from state leaders could be key in resolving the India-China border row