The PMO on Saturday called as "mischievous interpretation" the criticism over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's remarks at an all-party meeting that no one has entered Indian territory or captured any military post while referring to the Galwan Valley clash in eastern Ladakh.
In a statement, the Prime Minister's Office said the focus of Modi's remarks at the meeting on Friday was the events of June 15 at Galwan that led to the loss of lives of 20 Indian military personnel.
"The prime minister's observations that there was no Chinese presence on our side of the LAC (Line of Actual Control) pertained to the situation as a consequence of the bravery of our armed forces," it said.
Attempts are being made in some quarters to give a mischievous interpretation to remarks by the PM @narendramodi at All-Party Meeting yesterday— PIB India (@PIB_India) June 20, 2020
PM was clear that India would respond firmly to any attempts to transgress the Line of Actual Control
The Congress as well as a number of strategic affairs experts raised questions over Modi's remarks asking where did the Indian soldiers die if there was no transgression by the Chinese military in Galwan Valley. They also wondered whether Modi gave a clean chit to China over the standoff.
"The sacrifices of the soldiers of the 16 Bihar Regiment foiled the attempt of the Chinese side to erect structures and also cleared the attempted transgression at this point of the LAC on that day," the PMO said.
"The words of the prime minister 'those who tried to transgress our land were taught a befitting lesson by our brave sons of soil', succinctly summed up the ethos and the values of our armed forces," it said.
The PMO said Modi assured that India's armed forces will leave no stone unturned to protect the country's borders.
"Attempts are being made in some quarters to give a mischievous interpretation to remarks by the prime minister at the all-party meeting on Friday," it said.
Earlier on Saturday, the Congress asked the government to clarify its position on China's claim on the entire Galwan Valley.
Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram said Modi's remark had practically left everyone "baffled and bewildered".
Chidambaram said even after the PM's statement on Friday, China had blamed India for the clashes and had re-asserted its claim to the entire Galwan Valley.
"What is the government's answer to this claim? Now that China is claiming the entire Galwan Valley, will Government of India reject this claim… Let Government of India answer to China's claim today and not wait till tomorrow," he added.
On the BJP drawing a parallel between India's China policy in 1962 and now, the Congress leader said, "We must focus on the present and not talk about the past."
A day after India trashed the Chinese Army's claim of sovereignty over the Galwan Valley and asked Beijing to confine its activities to its side of the LAC, China's foreign ministry on Friday claimed that the Galwan Valley was on the Chinese side of the Line of Actual Control.
India has already dismissed China's claim of sovereignty over the Galwan Valley, saying such "exaggerated" and "untenable" claims are contrary to the understanding reached during a high-level military dialogue on June 6.