The Hindu, which claims to be a beacon of honest and unbiased journalism has published two highly shoddy reports, one claiming that China has gained control over 1000 sq. kms of Indian land in Eastern Ladakh, while in another report it goes on to make a rather extravagant claim of Indian troops being pulled back to Finger 2 of the Northern Pangong Tso bank. These unsubstantiated claims, which have been reported by no one so far, beg the question: who is dishing out such flamboyant lies to the Hindu, which they are publishing with little or no editorial scrutiny?
In a report titled, “China controls 1,000 sq. km of area in Ladakh,” the publication quotes a “senior government official” as saying that “in Depsang Plains, from patrolling point 10-13, the scale of Chinese control of India’s perception of the LAC stood at about 900 sq.km.” The “senior official” also adds, “About 20 sq. km in Galwan Valley and 12 sq. km in Hot Springs area is said to be under Chinese occupation, the official said. In Pangong Tso, the area under Chinese control is 65 sq. km, whereas in Chushul it is 20 sq. km.”
In another shoddy piece titled, “Massive Chinese build-up on north bank of Pangong Tso lake,” the Hindu goes on to claim, “Several rounds of meetings at the military and diplomatic levels have not yielded any results. China partially retreated to Finger 5 and as per the agreement, Indian troops were pulled back to Finger 2.”
What is noteworthy is the fact that the media organisation provides no visual proof of its tall, unsubstantiated and hilarious claims. Ideally, any media organisation, during times of conflict inflicted upon its country by an adversary should put out proof of whatever claims they make while carrying out their duties of reportage. The Hindu, however, decided to take exception to the same, and thought it best to take a “senior government official’s” word, who, for all we know, might not even exist, as the gospel truth.
The tall claims made by the Hindu run in complete contestation of the Indian Army and Government of India’s version on all that is unfolding along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh. The Indian Army is now in dominating positions not just in Southern Pangong Tso Lake but also northern areas subsequent to the operations carried out between 29-30th August, but has occupied heights and is overlooking the Chinese camps even in the Northern bank of the lake. The Indian Army’s clean and swift “readjustments” have turned the tables on China, which is now at a disadvantageous position in and around the tense lake, as India monitors each and every move of the PLA. For the Hindu, however, it seems such gains made by the Indian Army never happened.