(Brig (retd) GB Reddi)
No end to Rahul Gandhi’s “Guffaws” like the latest burst of “Act of God” Tweets. It is with utter disregard to its fallout on the sensitivities and sentiments of concerned sections of society resulting in self goals and backlash to Congress party interests.
The facts attempted to be highlighted by Rahul Gandhi to score brownie points are inaccurate, inappropriate and grossly irrelevant. Such expression of views provides a handle to adversaries like China and Pakistan to conduct information war campaign to lower the morale of the nation.
Rahul Gandhi’s recent three tweets to include: 1) economic slowdown due to Covid-19; 2) on pushing China out of India’s land; and 3) rations of Indian Soldiers.
The first tweet was invoked by Rahul Gandhi was in response to Ms. Nirmala Sitharamans statement after releasing the GDP data with estimates of contraction as bad as 25.9 per cent. “India’s economy is witnessing a slowdown for the first time in 40 years, this will be confirmed today. Those who can’t practice Satyagrah (dedication to truth) are blaming God,” the ex-Congress Chief tweeted and PM-in-waiting, when Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman attributed the decline in GDP to “act of God”.
The dictionary-legal usage throughout the English-speaking world of the term “Act of God” is simple – a natural hazard outside human control, such as an earthquake or tsunami, for which no person can be held responsible. Can one deny that COVID-19 is a natural hazard and its spread is outside human control? Even Chinese economy is adversely affected by the COVID-19. Due to bountiful rains in India, GDP contribution of agricultural sector is above par. And, it is business as usual in the unorganized sectors. There have been “No Food” riots reported from any corner of the country and likely shortages anticipated in future, unlike China which is importing food grains to make up shortages.
In retrospect, the second tweet made by Rahul Gandhi during ongoing India-China Eastern Ladakh stand-off is the biggest guffaw considering its past history. The tweet includes: “The Chinese have taken our land. When exactly is GOI planning to get it back? Or is that also going to be left to an ‘Act of God’?” Rahul Gandhi and his sycophant followers are fooling themselves by demanding Akshai Chin’s restoration to Indian Territory after his Great Grandfather’s great blunder in 1950. The “Dynasty” lacked the will to “throw the Chinese out of Akshai Chin” or to modernize the armed forces.
Rahul Gandhi may go back to school or university and attend lectures on history to learn from its lessons to realize that the current standoff is “Acts or Great betrayals/Blunders by the Dynasty”. Quite apt is Bismarck’s quote “Fools learn from their own experience; and wise learn from others experiences” for Rahul Gandhi.” Demand for debate in the current Parliament can end in exposing the follies of Rahul Gandhi’s “Nehru-Indira” Dynasty and also Sonia-Rahul Gandhi’s “Dark Age” or “Lost Decades”.
Who is responsible and accountable for the absurd and most quixotic defense policy including modernization of armed forces? Recalling Nehru statement shortly after independence drives the nail on the head of Nehru Dynasty. General Lockhart as the army chief took a strategic plan to the prime minister, asking for a government directive on the defense policy. He came back to Jick’s office shell-shocked. When asked what happened, General Lockhart replied that Nehru took one look at my paper and blew his top. ‘Rubbish! Total rubbish!’ he shouted. ‘We don’t need a defense plan. Our policy is ahimsa (non-violence). We foresee no military threats. Scrap the army! The police are good enough to meet our security needs’.”
Yet another significant folly committed by Nehru is recognizing the PRC on April 1, 1950, and supporting its stand that it was the only state that could be recognized as “China” and that the island of Taiwan was a part of Chinese territory. More strategically bizarre blunder of Nehru, Rahul Gandhi’s Great Grandfather and India’s first Prime Minister, was surrendering Tibet to Mao Zedong China in 1950 thereby rendering northern borders undemarcated and insecure and placing Tibet’s water resources squarely in China’s control.
More importantly, Nehru’s inept and myopic foreign policy revolving around “Panch Sheel and Non Aligned Movement”, lack of long term strategic forethought and foolish “forward policy and the grounding of the Indian Air Force resulted in India’s humiliating defeat in the 1962 war with China and the loss of Akshai Chin peninsula besides several other areas.
It is also on record that a package deal was first offered by Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai in 1960 entailing India recognizing the Aksai Chin plateau in the North as Chinese territory in lieu of China recognizing Arunachal Pradesh as Indian. Thus, allowing China to fight the 1962 war over the border issue. We have been eyeball-to-eyeball since.
Ipso facto, Nehru championed the cause of admission of China as permanent member of the UN Security Council which was admitted into the UN in 1971 on the 21st time of voting in October 1971 with Indira Gandhi, Grandmother of Rahul Gandhi and the then Prime Minister, voting in favor of PRCs entry after having known about Henry Kissinger secret visit to China through Pakistan. It clearly exposes lack of long term strategic foresight of even Indira Gandhi.
Add to it, the last time the package deal was reportedly offered was during Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi’s meeting with Deng Xiaoping in 1988, which may be viewed now as a “Lost Opportunity.”
Can Rahul Gandhi rebut the charge of successive “Dynasty” shunning the “Modernization of Armed Forces” after the outbreak of “Bofors Scam” scandal? Who is responsible for the decrease of the Indian Air Force Fighter Squadron strength from 45 to the current absurd status of 29 Squadrons?
In sum, never too late at the age of 50-years plus to realize that the Eastern Ladakh stand-off is the consequence of great grandfather Jawaharlal Nehru “great Betrayals” or “Strategic Follies” of the most despicable order contra national security interests followed by his Indira Gandhi, Grandmother, and Rajiv Gandhi, father. For all of them were instrumental for toeing the Chinese line in Tibet. Now, the duo of Sonia Gandhi-Rahul Gandhi has joined hands with the CCP in 2008 for hidden reasons at the cost of national security interests to toe the “Chinese” line.
It is also an established fact that India entered the “Dark Age – 1990-2020” of nearly three decades of “Modernization of Indian Armed Forces” primarily due to the Congress Party unrelenting follies. Not even latest rifles what to talk of jet fighters, guns, submarines and other advanced systems.
Ironic, the “Blind men of Hindustan” presided over the “Empire Building” of Central Para Military Forces under the Home Ministry under the leadership of Indian Police Service, which is woefully incapable of managing security of Line of Actual Control, Line of Control and the international borders during both peace and war like situations at a great cost to the tax-payers money.
For example, since restructuring in 1978, the Indo Tibet Border Police (ITBP) has undergone expansion to a force of 60 Battalions with 15 Sectors and 05 Frontiers as of 2018 with a sanctioned strength of 89,432. Similarly, Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) deployed on the border with Nepal and Bhutan, has 73 battalions with 94,261 active personnel as of 2019. Add to them, 46 Assam Rifles battalions under the Home Ministry. A sum total of 189 battalions (equivalent of infantry units for 21 infantry divisions or 7 additional Corps sized forces) with a plethora of centers and training establishments spread all over India at a tremendous cost to the exchequer with bare “teeth” to fight the emerging threats on the borders.
Instead of lambasting Modi led NDA for the current India-China border standoff, it would have been far better for Rahul Gandhi and his sycophantic followers – Blind men of Hindustan – to indulge in constructive debate and enable the Modi led NDA government to undertake “Merger/Integration of all forces responsible of border security on the Indo-Tibet border under the Ministry of Defense” as expeditiously as possible and reinforce them with artillery and other combat support systems.
Finally, the third tweet relates to the quality of rations authorized to the Soldiers as “unfair and discriminatory” during the discussion in the meeting of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defense convened to discuss the subject of “Provision and monitoring of the quality of ration and livery items to the defense forces, especially in border areas.” Rahul Gandhi said that rank cannot determine the provision for nutrition in the armed forces and called for a reconsideration of the related rules. Participating in a meeting he said providing less nutrition to the Soldiers is and should be reconsidered.
Now, it may be noted that Rahul Gandhi as a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defense in the current Lok Sabha failed to attend the previous 11 meetings even though he has been attacking the Modi government on various defense related matters, from Rafael jets to LAC conflict.
After the committee meeting, he tweeted, “The only ‘talk’ to have with China is about the restoration of ‘Status Quo Ante’ as of March 2020. PM and GOI refuse to take responsibility for pushing China out of our land. All other ‘talk’ is worthless.” Rahul Gandhi is either attempting to hoodwink gullible people of India by hiding the “Great Blunders/Betrayal” by the Nehru-Indira-Sonia Dynasty over the Indo-Tibet border disputes or daring Modi-led NDA government to escalate the tense situation into major war.
Furthermore, look at the intellectual absurdity of Rahul Gandhi’s ‘concern’ for the Indian Soldiers came just when the Chinese government mouthpiece Global Times’ editor-in-chief took to Twitter to peddle the same agenda to belittle India. The Global Times’ editor-in-chief taunted India over the “cold canned food” they are given to consume in comparison to the “hot meals” the PLA’s frontline soldiers enjoy.
Sharing a video of the food the Chinese Army officials get to eat, Hu Xijin, the editor-in-chief of the Chinese propaganda arm wrote: “With these drones, the PLA’s frontline soldiers can enjoy hot meals once winter reaches the plateau. Some sympathize with the nearby Indian soldiers who can only eat cold canned food and have to endure the severe cold and potential spread of COVID-19”.
In reality, with effect from July 2011, the scales of rations to officers, JCOs and Soldiers have been rationalized on par during the UPA regime: increase for chicken, or mutton from 110 grams per man per day to 180 grams; two eggs per day for Junior Commissioned Officers and Other Ranks; and special rations of ready-to-eat whole meal to the troops deployed in posts above 12,000 feet.
Yet, after over 15-year as MP, Rahul Gandhi ignorance clearly reflects his historical intellectual bankruptcy.
No wonder, Rahul Gandhi is peddling the same agenda which the Global Times editor-in-chief used to deride India – irrefutable collusion to drive a wedge among its political parties and people and lower the morale and will to fight of India. Recently, to target India’s move in Ladakh, the Chinese propaganda arm, Global Times, had leaned on Congress propaganda against the Modi government to mount pressure on India. It was an open threat issued by the Chinese mouthpiece, alleging that any wrong move by the PM Modi concerning the Ladakh standoff might provide an opening to the Congress party, which is restlessly seeking to depose the BJP government.
The close linkages between the Congress party with the Communist Party of China (CPC) is known fact. In 2008, the Congress party and the CCP had signed a deal for exchanging high-level information and co-operation between them. The memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed by the Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi and Xi Jinping himself, who was then the Chinese vice-president and standing committee member of the CPC’s politburo, that provided the two parties with the “opportunity to consult each other on important bilateral, regional and international developments” in the presence of Sonia Gandhi, then President of the Congress Party.
Furthermore, during the Indo-China standoff on the Doklam issue, Rahul Gandhi had met Chinese officials multiple times. His meeting with Chinese officials during his Kailash Mansarovar visit in 2018 was kept secret, but later he had revealed it accidentally during a speech in 2019.
In sum, viewed in the framework of Rahul Gandhi’s tweets and jibe as “Act Of God” is the grimmest fraud committed against the national security interests. Instead of attending the current Parliament session and making constructive suggestions pertaining to “Modernization of Armed Forces,” Rahul Gandhi has fled to USA instead of sending his sister Priyanka Gandhi. Why is Rahul Gandhi remaining on the back stage and shying away from debate after hurling innuendos against Modi and the NDA government? Wake up Media houses and sink partisan debates. In-dispassionately fix responsibility and accountability for the past follies of “Modernization of Indian Armed Forces” instead of cacophony.