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India to boycott Beijing Winter Olympics ceremonies after China decides to highlight Galwan clash during opening ceremony

Tibetan activists hold a street protest against the Beijing Winter Olympics (ANI Photo)

India today announced that it will not attend the opening or closing ceremony of the Beijing Winter Olympics after China's regrettable move to politicise the Games by choosing a People's Liberation Army commander, who had suffered injuries during the Galwan clash, as the torchbearer for the event.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson said on Thursday that the Indian envoy will not attend the ceremonies in Beijing after Qi Fabao, a PLA regiment commander who had sustained head injury during the Galwan Valley border skirmish, was chosen as a torchbearer during Wednesday's Winter Olympic torch relay.

Following the MEA announcement, Prasar Bharati CEO Shashi Shekhar Vempati tweeted that Doordarshan will also not telecast live the opening and closing ceremonies of the Games.

The MEA also said today that it has taken up with China the issue of torture of a boy from Arunachal Pradesh by the Chinese army.

The decision to field Galwan soldier, highlighting the June 15, 2020 clash, comes at a particularly embarrassing moment for China. 

As reported earlier, new research has shown that the PLA had lost at least nine times more soldiers than its official count of four during the Galwan Valley clash with India in June 2020.

The shocking revelation about China hiding its losses was revealed in an article in the Australian newspaper 'The Klaxon' which cited a report prepared by a group of social media researchers after a year-long investigation.

It said that at least 38 PLA troops had drowned while crossing a fast-flowing, sub-zero river in darkness.

Of the four soldiers China has confirmed died, only one – Junior Sergeant Wang Zhuoran – is reported as having drowned, the investigative newspaper said.

The report cited "several Weibo users" and said, "at least 38 PLA troops along with Wang were washed away and drowned that night…of which only Wang was declared among the four officially dead soldiers".

Also Read: China's loss of soldiers during Galwan clash nine-times more than its official count, says new research