‘Arunachal Is, Was, Will Always be Part of Bharat’: PM Modi on China’s ‘Claim’ Over Parts of Northeastern State – News18


PM Narendra Modi being felicitated by Arunachal Pradesh CM Pema Khandu during the ‘Viksit Bharat Viksit Northeast’ event, in Itanagar last month. (Image: PTI/File)

PM Narendra Modi said there should be no doubt over Arunachal Pradesh being an integral part of India, and this is evident in how the Centre’s development works are reaching the northeastern state

Amid a row over China renaming several areas in Arunachal Pradesh, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said there should be no doubt over the northeastern state being an integral part of India. He said this was evident in how the central government’s development works are “reaching Arunachal and the Northeast like the first rays of the sun, faster than ever before”.

In an interview to the Assam Tribune, the prime minister was asked about China claiming parts of Arunachal Pradesh for years and how the Chinese raise this issue from time to time. Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, the opposition, too, has hit out at the BJP-led government at the Centre over the matter.

Asked if the state is safe and if enough steps are being taken to ensure that it remains with India, Prime Minister Modi told the newspaper: “Arunachal Pradesh is, was and shall always be an integral part of Bharat. Today, the development works are reaching Arunachal and the Northeast like the first rays of the sun, faster than ever before.”

He said he had visited Itanagar last month for the ‘Viksit Bharat, Viksit Northeast’ programme where he inaugurated development projects worth Rs 55,000 crore. He had also inaugurated the Sela Tunnel, which is being seen as a strategic game-changer by providing all-weather connectivity to Tawang.

“Around 35,000 families in Arunachal Pradesh got their pucca houses, and 45,000 households benefited from the drinking water supply project… In 2022, we inaugurated the Donyi Polo airport for enhanced air linkage to the rest of the nation. On the energy front, the Dibang Multipurpose Project will contribute to employment, energy and water resource management. We have commenced new road projects for about 125 villages and tourism and other infrastructure-related projects in 150 villages. The government has also launched a Rs 10,000 crore UNNATI scheme that will bring new possibilities for investment and jobs in the northeastern region,” the PM was quoted as saying in the report.

China had viewed this visit as hostile and registered a “diplomatic protest” with India, reiterating its claim over the area by saying these moves will “only complicate” the unresolved boundary issue.

Of late, the Congress has repeatedly attacked PM Modi over the issue, with the party’s national president Mallikarjun Kharge accusing him of “sleeping” while China “entered” Indian territory. Addressing an election rally in Rajasthan’s Chittorgarh, he said Modi does not think of the country and is busy abusing the Gandhi family whose members sacrificed their lives for the nation.

Kharge has also condemned as “preposterous” China’s renaming act in Arunachal and asked why the Centre is not strongly reprimanding the neighbouring country on such “ludicrous actions”.

“When China resorts to provocation, PM Modi attempts to seek refuge by a false narrative on Katchatheevu,” the Congress chief said in a post on X.

‘Raising infiltration issue with Myanmar’

Asked about Mizoram facing infiltration trouble from Myanmar, Modi said the influx is due to internal developments in that country. “We have been raising this issue with the Myanmar authorities as this directly impacts India, particularly our northeastern states. To prevent infiltration and secure our borders, several steps have been taken by the government,” he told Assam Tribune.

Modi said these steps include the decision to scrap the free movement regime between India and Myanmar, increased and effective deployment of border guarding forces on the Indo-Myanmar border, close coordination of security agencies among others. He also spoke about intensified fencing construction along the Myanmar border.

“The Government of India has urged the Mizoram government to take up a campaign for the capture of biometric data of illegal migrants in the state. The Government of India has also been providing devices and necessary assistance to the state government to carry out a biometric capture plan. We are bringing about policy changes to adjust to the changing realities on the ground. We want to see peace and stability return to Myanmar at the earliest, so that these people can return to their home country peacefully,” he was quoted as saying.


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