Kolkata: Senior Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury on Wednesday charged that the situation along the India-China border was due to the "diplomatic short-sightedness" of the Narendra Modi government, and said it was time that the prime minister proves that he has "a 56-inch chest".
The leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha said the rhetoric of muscular nationalism witnessed during the time of standoff with Pakistan is now missing.
"What happened to the 'swing diplomacy' of 2014? The fact is this situation arose just because of the diplomatic short-sightedness of the Modi government. When you run a government as per your whims and fancies, this is what happens," Chowdhury told PTI. The government lacks the political will to act, he added.
"PM Modi boasts about his 56-inch chest. It is time to prove it through actions and not only through words. If he can't prove it, then the countrymen will understand his claims are hollow," Chowdhury said.
BJP leaders have often said that Modi has a "56-inch chest" or "chappan inch chati", a Hindi expression referring to political machismo.
"I wonder what happened to that rhetoric of muscular nationalism we are used to when it comes to Pakistan. In the case of China, all of a sudden everybody has gone silent," he said.
Chowdhury also accused the BJP and the prime minister of completely failing on the front of national security.
"Twenty Indian soldiers have died, what is the government doing? Is the government sleeping? The prime minister who on every given occasion, either tweets or addresses the nation is silent. He is duty-bound to give an explanation to the nation on what has happened and what is India doing as a countermeasure," he said.
The prime minister has convened an all-party meeting on Friday to discuss the situation, amid demands by the opposition that government should give details of the violent face-off between Indian and Chinese troops in the Galwan Valley in Ladakh which left 20 Indian Army personnel dead....