In a fresh stand-off with the government, Opposition leaders on Thursday pressed for a resolution in Parliament declaring Arunachal Pradesh an integral part of India.
They accused the government of bowing to Left pressure that the issue not be raised in the Houses till Chinese President Hu Jintao leaves India.
Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha LK Advani said though the BJP had given advance notice that it would raise the issue of the Chinese ambassador’s remarks on Arunachal Pradesh in Parliament — at the meeting of the Business Advisory Committees of the two Houses on Wednesday — the Houses were adjourned to suit the government.
Flanked by his counterpart in the Rajya Sabha, Jaswant Singh, and deputy leaders VK Malhotra and Sushma Swaraj, Advani said Parliamentary Affairs Minister PR Dasmunsi had telephoned him to request deferring the matter to Friday as Hu would still be in India on Thursday.
"I told Dasmunsi the BJP could defer the issue on the condition that the government give an assurance that it will move a resolution in Parliament declaring Arunachal Pradesh an integral part of the country," he said.
Advani said Dasmunsi assured him he would get back to him after talking to the Prime Minister. But there was no word from him. At around 11 pm, Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee called to say the government did not want the BJP to raise the issue till Hu left.
"I am unaware why the government is shy of the issue being discussed in Parliament. After all, the territory of Arunachal Pradesh has never been an issue of dispute between India and China, which has only contested the location of the McMohan Line."
"A resolution from Parliament in response to Ambassador Sun Yuxi’s comments will convey to China the sentiments of the people of India and the state," he said.
Reacting to the BJP’s demand that the Parliament adopt a resolution reiterating that Arunachal Pradesh is an integral part of India in the wake of China’s claim to the state, the Congress on Thursday said no decision has been taken on a "sense of the House resolution on the subject. Arunchal Pradesh is an integral part of India and it has been formally announced earlier," party spokesperson Abhishekh Singhvi told reporters.