Lowering our guard against China led to 1962 defeat: BJP
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday termed the report published online by Australian journalist Neville Maxwell on the Indo-China War in 1962, as yet another proof of clear lapses in defence preparedness by the then Congress Government of Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru.
"The Henderson Report on the Indo-China War has been under discussion for the last two days, because, a journalist from that time, has chosen to put his version in the public domain. Although, we know the terms of reference of the report did not include decision-making by the civil government, certainly, a lot of correspondence which took place between the commands and the Government of India were all recorded in one part of the report," Sitharaman said.
"It is important for us to learn lessons from the debacle of 1962, which put down the morale of the armed forces. This calls for us to have a meaningful and detailed discussion on this issue. I find worrying resemblance with the manner in which UPA (United Progressive Alliance) Government have handled the defence preparedness showing close consonance with the government during that time," Sitharaman added.
A section of the confidential Henderson Brooks report that critically reviewed India's defence preparedness and strategies during the 1962 war with China has been released online by Maxwell.
While the report may not contain significantly new revelations about the poor state of India's forces during the war, it discusses "how the army was ordered to challenge the Chinese military to a conflict it could only lose," according to Maxwell, a retired foreign correspondent, who was based in Delhi at the time of the war.
(Posted on 18-03-2014)
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