External affairs minister S Jaishankar The word ‘Pitai’ should not be used for our jawans
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, on 19 December 2022, criticised Congress MP Rahul Gandhi for using the word “pitai (beating)” in the context of clashes between Indian and Chinese troops in Arunachal Pradesh’s Tawang sector and he strongly objected to the use of this term and said, “we should not disrespect our jawans.”
He said this while replying to the debate on the Anti-Martine Piracy Bill that was passed by Lok Sabha unanimously.
Rahul Gandhi also advised the minister to deepen his understanding, Responding to this, Jaishankar said in the Lok Sabha today: “We have no problem if there are political differences, even if there is political criticism. I have heard sometimes that my own understanding needs to be deepened. When I see who is giving the advice, I can only bow and respect, but I think we shouldn’t directly or indirectly criticise our jawans. Our jawans are standing in Yangtse at 13,000 feet, defending our border, they do not deserve to have the word ‘pitai’. The word ‘pitai’ shouldn’t be used for our jawans. They should be respected, they should be honoured, and they should be appreciated. This is not something that is appropriate,”
Responding to the Opposition’s criticism that the government is not taking appropriate steps to de-escalate the situation at Chinese borders, Jaishankar said; “If we were indifferent to China then who sent the Indian Army to the border? If we were indifferent to China then why are we pressurising China for de-escalation and disengagement today? Why are we saying publicly that our relations are not normal?”
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Rahul Gandhi on Indian army
Addressing the media on the 100th day of his Bharat Jodo Yatra, Rahul Gandhi said “the Chinese soldiers were beating up our jawans in Arunachal Pradesh”. While criticising the current government on the Chinese action in Arunachal Pradesh, Rahul stated: “Hamare jawanon ki pitai ho rahi hai”.
“We should understand what is happening. The External Affairs Minister keeps giving statements, but he should deepen his understanding,” Gandhi had said at a press conference in Jaipur during his “Bharat Jodo Yatra”.
BJP had sharply attacked the Congress leader, demanding that Congress should immediately oust him from the party for his comments on Indian jawans.