‘Have you consumed opium’: If not scared, why is China entering India: Kharge to Modi

Mallikarjun Kharge Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi.

At a recent rally, senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge launched a scathing attack on Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi, questioning his government’s response to China’s incursions into Indian territory.

Kharge criticised Modi asking why there wasn’t a more robust response if there was no fear. He went on to accuse the government of being indifferent or inactive in the face of such challenges, drawing attention to the seriousness of the situation by invoking historical references.

“If you aren’t scared, why is China entering Indian territory. Are you sleeping, have you consumed opium,” Kharge was quoted as saying as he attacked Modi at rally.

This week, China renamed 30 locations along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the northeastern Indian state, reports said.

The Chinese Ministry of Civil Affairs, responsible for establishing and naming administrative divisions, issued the fourth list of “standardised” geographical names in Arunachal Pradesh, referred to as Zangnan by Beijing, according to a report from a Hong Kong-based newspaper.

The list of renamed places includes 11 residential areas, 12 mountains, four rivers, one lake, one mountain pass, and a piece of land.

The names are presented in Chinese characters, Tibetan, and pinyin, the Roman alphabet version of Mandarin Chinese. Additionally, the ministry provided detailed latitude and longitude coordinates along with a high-resolution map.

According to the South China Morning Post, the ministry stated, “In accordance with the relevant provisions of the State Council [China’s cabinet] on the management of geographical names, we, in conjunction with the relevant departments, have standardised some of the geographical names in Zangnan of China.”

This isn’t the first time China has renamed places in Arunachal Pradesh. Beijing initially released a list of six standardised names in 2017, followed by 15 places in 2021 and another 11 places in 2023.

India has consistently rejected China’s attempts to rename places in Arunachal Pradesh, emphasising that the state is an integral part of the country.

“China has persisted with its senseless attempts to rename places in the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. We firmly reject such attempts. Assigning invented names will not alter the reality that Arunachal Pradesh is, has been, and will always be an integral and inalienable part of India,” the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar dismissed China’s claims on Arunachal Pradesh as “ludicrous,” asserting that the frontier state is a natural part of India.

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