China continues to be in illegal occupation of approximately 38,000 sq. kms. of Indian territory in the Union Territory of Ladakh for the last six decades, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan informed Lok Sabha on Friday.
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Further, under the so-called China-Pakistan ‘Boundary Agreement’ signed in 1963, Pakistan illegally ceded 5,180 sq. kms. of Indian territory in Shaksgam Valley from areas illegally occupied by Pakistan in Union Territory of Ladakh to China, the minister said in a written reply to a question.
Replying to a question of Bahujan Samaj Party MP Shyam Yadav Singh Muraleedharan said, “Government of India has never recognised the so-called China-Pakistan ‘Boundary Agreement’ of 1963 and has consistently maintained that it is illegal and invalid.”
“The fact that the entire Union Territories of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh are an integral and inalienable part of India has been clearly conveyed to Pakistani and Chinese authorities several times,” the MoS said.
After the 1962 conflict, both China and Pakistan saw an opportunity to strengthen and develop their relations to put strategic pressure on India. As part of that bargain in 1963 agreement between China and Pakistan was signed, even though there is no border between the two countries. Moreover, it was ceded to China by Pakistan.
Later, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in 2013, making further use of the illegal connections between China and Pakistan to consolidate their bilateral ties including Shaksgam Valley to China in 1963.
India has continuously opposed the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and CPEC as a violation of sovereignty right from 2013 onwards.