Congress said if there is a debate then a collective resolve would be demonstrated to the world

New Delhi: The Congress on Friday accused the government of "running away" from a debate on the border situation with China and asserted that it would continue to exert pressure for a discussion on the crucial issue in Parliament.

Congress general secretary in-charge communications Jairam Ramesh said at Wednesday's meeting of the leaders of opposition parties, including the Aam Aadmi Party and the TMC in Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge's room in Parliament, the issue of Line of Actual Control (LAC) was top most among those shortlisted to be raised during Winter session.

"We had given notice, this morning, regarding the LAC issue in Rajya Sabha but it was not accepted, we will continue to exert pressure (for a discussion)," he said at a press conference at the AICC headquarters.

Mr Ramesh said the government has been evading a debate on it for 22 months despite Congress pressing for it.

The Congress leader said he reminded Rajya Sabha Chairman Jagdeep Dhankar Friday that in November 1962, when China was attacking India's borders in Arunachal Pradesh and Ladakh, the Parliament session was in progress, and the then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and many members of the cabinet, sat in Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha, listening to criticism of their government.

"The Opposition leaders of that time, Acharya Kriplani, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, NG Gore were big leaders, they strongly criticized the policies of the government...LAC has been disturbed on the border of China, the Chinese army has intruded, the status-quo ante of March 2020, has not been restored," Ramesh claimed at a press conference at the AICC headquarters here.

"At first, the prime minister said that 'no one has entered, no one is sitting on our land' and there is no discussion in Parliament. We also suggested that the Defence Minister should call the leaders of Opposition, hold an in-camera meeting, hold a briefing, if he does not want a debate, but that too did not happen," he said.

Noting that it is a sensitive matter, Mr Ramesh said if there is a debate then a collective resolve would be demonstrated to the world.

"I do not understand why the government is running away from it (debate)," he said.