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Xi's India visit is Modi's event management exercise, says Congress

Salman Khursheed says visit being projected as enormously successful even as there were intrusions by Chinese army and civilians at LAC

BS Reporter  |  New Delhi 

Dismissing the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)'s claim that Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to India was hugely successful, the Congress on Friday said it was nothing more than "an event management" exercise. The opposition party said the Narendra Modi government has failed to raise contentious issues like the border incursions with the Chinese, though the PM was more vocal while addressing the domestic audience.

Meanwhile, a Congress delegation led by Congress President Sonia Gandhi had met the Chinese President and raised the issue of border skirmishes.

Congress spokesperson Salman Khurshid said, “Sadly there was a degree of event management about it. It was projected as enormously successful even when there were intrusions by PLA (Peoples' Liberation Army) and even civilians.”

Khurshid, former external affairs minister, recalled how the BJP used to make a hue and cry every time the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) spoke of the difference in perception of the Line of Actual Control. "Now, they (BJP leaders) are saying the same thing," said Khurshid.

The government should have asserted India’s stand on the border dispute. "This was an opportunity when minister of state for home affairs should have been brought to the front to show that we are proud that a minister from Arunachal is also at such an important role. Was it necessary to hide him or keep him behind? I think these questions should be answered," said Khurshid.

The Congreess also demanded to know from the government why issues about dams on the Brahmaputra, an issue that had been flagged more than once by Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, had not been raised.

“There was too much talk of investment from China, at the end only one-fourth of it materialised,” Khurshid pointed out. India’s relations with China cannot revolve around commerce and investment alone. At no cost can India’s dignity, respect and be compromised, said Khurshid.

First Published: Fri, September 19 2014. 19:42 IST