Thursday, September 24, 2015

China 'intervention' during the 1965 conflict

Analysts celebrate the 50th anniversary of the 1965 Indo-Pakistan conflict.
In this connection, I am posting 4 Appendixes published by the Ministry Of External Affairs in the Notes, Memoranda And Letters Exchanged Between The Government Of India And China between January 1965 and February 1966 (known as White Paper No. XII).
These Appendixes deal with the Chinese 'intervention' in the conflict.
The correspondence between Delhi and Beijing is available in the White Paper XII, which can be downloaded from my website.
All the 14 White Papers on China are now available.
On September 23, 1965, The Hindu published the following article entitled 'Chinese intrude at three points'
The Chinese have intruded into Indian territory in Ladakh, in the middle sector and in Sikkim. The intrusion varies from two to three miles in the middle sector to a few hundred yards in Ladakh and in Sikkim. In the Dongchu La in Sikkim, the Chinese have intruded 800 yards into Indian territory. There was no exchange of fire between Indian and Chinese forces to-day [September 22], according to an official spokesman. The spokesman said he could not say what the Chinese would do at the expiry of the extended time limit at 9-30 to-night [September 22]. The Chinese posture was provocative. They were still on the border and at some points across the border in Indian territory. He could not say whether the Chinese would see good sense or do something more than what they had done already. The spokesman said that he had no confirmation of the New China News Agency report that Chinese forces had withdrawn from four points in the Sikkim and other sectors. According to reports received by the Defence Ministry, in the Sikkim sector, the Chinese continue to build up their positions and strength right up to the border.


Statement of the Government of the People's Republic of China, 7, September, 1965.

On September 6, 1965, India suddenly launched an armed attack on Pakistan. Indian troops have crossed the International Boundary between India and Pakistan and are pushing towards Lahore, the Capital of West Pakistan. The Indian radio has announced general mobilization. Thus the Indian Government has enlarged the local conflict between India and Pakistan in Kashmir into a general conflict between the two countries. In the face of the massive armed attack by India, the President of Pakistan has called on the entire people of the country to rise in resistance against the enemy and appealed for sympathy and support from all peace-loving peoples of the world.
The Indian Government's armed attack on Pakistan is an act of naked aggression. It not only is a crude violation of all principles guiding international relations but also constitutes a grave threat to peace in this part of Asia. The Chinese Government sternly condemns India for its criminal aggression, expresses firm support for Pakistan in its just struggle aggression and solemnly warns the Indian Government that it must bear responsibility for all the consequences of its criminal and extended aggression.
The Indian Government has always been perfidious on the Kashmir question. It once pledged solemnly with Pakistan to grant the Kashmiri people the right of self-determination. But far from honouring its pledge it has brazenly declared that Kashmir is an integral part of India and subjected the Kashmiri people to brutal national oppression. Where there is oppression, there will be resistance. It is entirely proper that the people in the Indian occupied area of Kashmir should rise up in resistance. In order to cover up its sanguinary suppression of the Kashmiri people, the Indian Government openly breached the cease-fire line in the disputed territory of Kashmir to intrude into the area under the control of Pakistan and carried out military provocations and armed occupation. This, of course, could not but arouse Pakistan to counter attack in self-defence. All this was in the nature of a local conflict in the disputed territory of Kashmir between India and Pakistan.
India already committed aggression on the Kashmir issue. Now it has openly launched a massive armed attack on Pakistan. This is a still more serious act of aggression.
The United Nations has always had an ill-fame on the Kashmir question. It solemnly pledged to guarantee national self-determination for Kashmir. However, 18 years have passed during which the United Nations watched on without lifting a finger while India acted lawlessly in Kashmir. The United Nations did not breathe a single word when India violated the cease-fire line. But as soon as Pakistan fought back in self-defence, the United Nations came out to mediate. This is by no means the end of the story. It is unconceivable that the United Nations, which has been unfair for 18 years, should suddenly become fair. The so-called mediation by the United Nations is based on a report of the Secretary General. The report itself is unfair. How can a fair conclusion be drawn from an unfair premise? On the Kashmir question, the United Nations has once again proved a tool of U.S. imperialism and its partners in their attempt to control the whole world. This will be further proved true during the current extended aggression against Pakistan by India.
India's armed aggression against Pakistan is another exposure of the chauvinist and expansionist features of its ruling circles. The Indian Government glibly says that it pursues a policy of so-called peaceful co-existence. But actually it has never ceased for a single day its activities of bullying and encroaching upon its neighbours wherever possible. Almost every neighbour of India has known this from its own experience. The Indian ruling circles are the greatest hypocrites in contemporary international life. The Chinese people have had a deep experience of this. Although the Indian ruling circles did not gain anything from their massive armed attack on China in October, 1962, they have never stopped making intrusions and provocations along the Sino-Indian border. India is still entrenched on Chinese territory on the Sino-Sikkim border and has not withdrawn. It is constantly probing furtively and making intrusions and harassment against Chinese territory in the Western sector of the Sino-Indian border. Indian violations of Chinese territory are far from coming to an end. The Chinese Government has served repeated warnings, and it is now closely following the development of India's acts of aggression and strengthening its defences and heightening its alertness along its border.
The Indian Government probably believes that since it has the backing of the U.S. imperialists and the modern revisionists it can bully its neighbours, defy public opinion and do whatever it likes. This will not do. Aggression is aggression. India's aggression against any one of its neighbours concerns all of its neighbours. Since the Indian Government has taken the first step in committing aggression against Pakistan, it cannot evade responsibility for the chain of consequences arising therefrom.
The Chinese Government is deeply convinced that, with the sympathy and support of the peace-loving countries and peoples of Asia and the whole world, the hundred million people of Pakistan will rise as one-man to save their country and finally drive back the Indian aggressors.

Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri's Statement in Parliament, 17 September, 1965

I want to inform the House that this morning we received a communication from the Chinese Government demanding that within three days we should dismantle our defence installations which they allege are located on their Side of the border in Tibet across the Sikkim border. I might for the benefit of the House, read out the relevant portions of the communication, although I would be placing the communication and our reply on the Table of the House.
"In its notes the Indian Government continues to resort to its usual subterfuges in an attempt to deny the intruding activities of Indian troops along the Sino-Indian boundary and the China-Sikkim boundary. This attempt cannot possibly succeed. Since ceasefire and troop withdrawal were effected along the Sino-Indian border by China on her own initiative in 1962, Indian troops have never stopped their provocations, and there have been more than 300 intrusions into China either by ground or by air. The Chinese Government has repeatedly lodged protests with the Indian Government and served warnings to it, and has successively notified some friendly countries. The facts are there, and they cannot be denied by the Indian Government by mere quibbling. Moreover, the Chinese Government has four times proposed (the latest occasion in June 1965) Sino­ Indian Joint Investigation into India's illegal construction of military works for aggression on the Chinese side of the China-Sikkim boundary, but has each time been refused by the Indian Government. Now the Indian Government pretentiously says that the matter can be settled if only an independent and neutral observer should go to the border to see for himself. It further shamelessly asserts that Indian troops have never crossed the Sikkim-China boundary which has been formally delimited, and that India has not built any military works either on the Chinese side of the border or on the border itself. This is a barefaced lie. How can it hope to deceive anyone?
“As is known to everybody, the Indian Government has long been using the territory of Sikkim against China. Since September 1962, not to mention earlier times, Indian troops have crossed the China-Sikkim boundary, which was delimited long ago, and have built a large number of military works for aggression either on the Chinese side of the China-Sikkim boundary or on the boundary itself. There are now fifty six such military works, large and small which they helve built in the past few years all over the important passes along the China-Sikkim boundary, thus wantonly encroaching upon China's territory and violating her sovereignty. In these years the Chinese Government has made thirteen representations to the Indian Government. But the Indian Government has all along turned a deaf ear to them and does not have the slightest respect for China's sovereignty and territorial integrity. Far from stopping its acts of aggression, the Indian Government has intensified them by ordering its troops to intrude into Chinese territory for reconnaissance and provocations.”
We are sending a reply to all these points and as I said I shall place the reply on the table of the House. I will read out the relevant portions of our reply.
"Ever since the Sino-Indian border problem was raised by the Chinese Government, the Government of India had made strenuous attempts to settle the question peacefully and with honour. Even after the unprovoked Chinese attack across the border in October­ November, 1962, the Government of India consistently followed the policy of seeking a peaceful settlement honourable to both the parties concerned.
As has been pointed out in various notes to the Chinese Government in the past, the Government of India has given strict instructions to its armed forces and personnel not to cross the international boundary in the Eastern and the Middle Sectors and the so-called 'line of actual control' in the Western Sector. The Government of India are satisfied after careful and detailed investigations, that Indian personnel as well as aircraft have fully carried out their instructions and have not transgressed the international boundary and the 'line of actual control' in the Western Sector at any time at any place. The Government of India are, therefore, absolutely convinced that the allegations contained in the Chinese note under reply are completely groundless. The Government of India are constrained to reject these allegations and to reassert emphatically that they do not accept the claims to vast areas of Indian territory in the Western, Middle and Eastern Sectors of the border put forward in the Chinese note under reply. As regards China's stand on Kashmir and on the present unfortunate conflict between India and Pakistan, it is nothing but interference on the part of China calculated to prolong and to enlarge the conflict."
The background of the matter is that in September 1962 some defence structures were constructed on the Sikkim side of the Sino­ Indian frontier. These structures have not been in occupation since the cessation of hostilities in November, 1962. Since the Chinese Government alleged that some of these structures were on their side of the border, India had in its note of September 12, 1965 gone to the extent of suggesting that an independent Observer be allowed to go this border to see for himself the actual state of affairs. The Chinese Government has not, unfortunately, accepted this reasonable proposal and has reiterated its proposal for joint inspection. In our reply which is being sent today, we are informing the Chinese Government that their contention is entirely incorrect. Nevertheless, as an earnest of our desire to give no ground to the Chinese for making this a pretext for aggressive action, we are informing them that we have no objection to a joint inspection of those points of the Sikkim-Tibet border where Indian personnel are alleged to have set up military structures in Tibetan territory. The Government of India on their part are prepared to arrange such an inspection as early as possible, at an appropriate official level, on a mutually convenient date.
We have sent a reply to the Chinese note accordingly and hope that Chinese Government would agree to action being taken as proposed. Copies of the Chinese note and of our reply have been placed on the table of the House.
I know the House would feel concerned about the intentions of the Chinese Government. We do hope that China would not take advantage of the present situation and attack India. The House may rest assured that we are fully vigilant and that if we are attacked, we shall fight for our freedom with grim determination. The might of China will not deter us from defending our territorial integrity. I shall keep the House informed of further developments.


Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri's Statement in Parliament, 20 September, 1965

I place on the Table of the House the text of a further note which was handed over to our Charge d'Affaires in Peking yesterday.
The House will recall that we had taken an attitude calculated to maintain peace when replying to the last note which we had received from the Chinese Government. It is clear from the kind of response which China has sent that what China is looking for is not a redress of grievances, real or imaginary, but some excuse to start its aggressive activities again, this time acting in collusion with its ally, Pakistan. The extension of the time-limit for the ultimatum was, in our view, no more than a device to gain time to watch what comes out of the discussions in the Security Council.
The allegations which China has been making in the series of notes that it has been sending to us, are such that they would hardly justify any civilised Government in having recourse to force, even if the allegations were true. If there are any structures on Chinese territory in areas where the border is delimited and not in dispute even according to the Chinese, surely, there is nothing to prevent the Chinese Government from having them removed, instead of suggesting to us that we should have them removed, which would only be possible by our men going into their territory. Similarly, no one can imagine that any Government would threaten another on the ground that their cattle have been lifted or on the ground that out of the thousands of Tibetans who have sought asylum in this country two or four are being detained here against their wishes.
To justify its aggressive attitude, China is pretending to be a guardian of Asian countries who, according to China, are being bullied by India. The basic objective of China, therefore, is to claim for itself a position of dominance in Asia which no self­ respecting nation in Asia is prepared to recognise. Large or small, strong or weak, every country in Asia has the fullest right to preserve its independence and sovereignty on terms of equality. The dominance of the Chinese cannot be accepted by any of them. We reject China's claim to tell us anything about what we should or should not do about Kashmir which is an integral part of India. Our offer of resolving the differences over these minor matters by peaceful means is still open.
However, China's aggressive intentions are clear from the fact that even while they have in their note extended the time-limit by 72 hours, in actual fact they have started firing at our border posts both in Sikkim and in Ladakh.
If, China persists in aggression, we shall defend ourselves by all means at our disposal.
A formal reply to the Chinese note will be sent later today.
May I say a word that we have just now received the full text of the resolution passed in the Security Council? Naturally, it deserves our very careful consideration, and I might be making a statement on that tomorrow in the House.

Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri's Statement in both the Houses of Parliament, 22 September, 1965

I place on the table of the House a copy of the Security Council resolution, dated the 20th September, 1965, relating to the current conflict between India and Pakistan-a conflict which commenced on the 5th August, 1965, when Pakistan launched a massive attack on India by sending thousands of armed infiltrators across the cease­ fire line in our State of Jammu and Kashmir.
As the Hon'ble Members would see, the Security Council had demanded that both Governments should order a cease-fire effective from 12-30 p.m. Indian Standard Time today, the 22nd September, 1965. On the question of cease-fire, the views of the Government of India were stated in detail and without any ambiguity in my letters of September 14 and 15, 1965, addressed to the Secretary­ General. As stated in these letters, the Government of India had clearly accepted that they would order a cease-fire without any preconditions on being informed that Pakistan had agreed to do the same. On receiving the Security Council resolution, therefore, we sent a communication to the Secretary-General, in accordance with our earlier stand, informing him that we would be prepared to issue orders for a simple cease-fire effective from the appointed time and date, provided Pakistan agreed to do likewise. A copy of this communication is also placed on the Table of the House.
Throughout yesterday, there was no further message from the Secretary-General, but in the early hours of this morning we received a message from him advising us to order a unilateral cease-fire in compliance with the relevant provisions of the Security Council resolution, with the proviso that our troops could fire back if they were attacked. This, of course, was entirely impossible. In a battle which is continuing, it is just not possible for one side to ask its soldiers to stop firing, leaving the other side free to continue its operations. Our representative at the United Nations was, therefore, instructed to inform the Secretary-General accordingly.
A further report was received a short while ago that at the request of the Foreign Minister of Pakistan, an emergent meeting of the Security Council was convened, at which an announcement was made, on behalf of Pakistan that they also had agreed to issue orders for a cease-fire and cessation of hostilities. From our side, the requisite orders are now being issued to our field commanders to effect a complete cease-fire by 3-30 a.m. tomorrow morning.
The Security Council Resolution refers to other matters which will require consideration subsequently. However, the policy of the Government of India in regard to matters which are of vital importance to us and which relate to the present conflict, has been stated by me on more than one occasion on the floor of this House and also in my recent communications to the Secretary-General.
I do not propose to go into any further details at the present stage. Detailed discussions will have to take place and there would have to be a fuller study of the problems to which I have just referred. For this purpose, our representative at the United Nations will keep himself available to the Secretary-General.
There will now be a cessation of hostilities. Peace is good. However, there is still a threat from the Foreign Minister of Pakistan, which he held out today, while speaking in the Security Council. We have, therefore, to be very watchful and vigilant.
The nation has recently been going through its greatest trial. The times have been difficult but they have served a great purpose. The whole world knows now that the people of India-Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Parsees and others-constitute a united nation with a determined common will and purpose. On the battle front, the supreme sacrifice has been made by the members of all communities who have shown that they are Indians first and Indians last.
To our armed forces, I would like to pay on behalf of this Parliament and the entire country, our warmest tributes. By their valour and heroism, they have given a new confidence to the people of India. Those who have lost their beloved on the battle front, have made a contribution to the preservation of our independence which will never be forgotten by a grateful nation. Their sorrow and their pride are shared by the whole country.
Mr. Speaker, Sir, I would now seek your permission to express to all the members of this august House, to all the political parties in the country, to the leaders of public opinion, of labour organisations, of business and industry, and of many other voluntary associations, my feelings of the deepest gratitude. In the hour of trial each one of the 470 million people of this country stood up shoulder to shoulder to meet the challenge to our freedom.
I should like to inform the House that on 18th September, 1965, I received a message from Mr. Kosygin, Chairman of the Council of Ministers. USSR, offering his good offices for bringing about improved relations between India and Pakistan. Mr. Kosygin is impelled by noble intentions. No one can ever contest the view that ultimately India and Pakistan will have to live together as peaceful neighbours. We cannot therefore say no to any efforts, which may help to bring about such a situation, made by those who are sincere and genuine in their feelings of goodwill and friendship. I have therefore, informed Mr. Kosygin today that we would welcome his efforts and good offices.
I would also like to give the House some further details about the tragic incident in which the other day, we suffered a grievous loss. Investigations conducted on the spot show that the aircraft in which Shri Balvantray Mehta was travelling, was shot down by a Pakistani plane. The marks on the fuselage establish that gun fire had been used. Preliminary investigations by the Air Force authorities who also have visited the scene confirm that the aircraft was shot down at a low height. The ammunition recovered at the site of the crash also proves that the attacking aircraft was a Pakistani plane. That a non-combatant civilian aircraft should have been shot down in this manner is one of the most inhuman acts which we must all deplore and condemn. Shri Balvantrayji, his wife and the others who were travelling with him have laid down their lives at the altar of the freedom of the country. Their names will remain enshrined in our memory.
We are still faced with the Chinese ultimatum. The House is aware that almost at the same time when the Chinese Government announced the extension of the time-limit of the ultimatum to India by 72 hours on September 19, their troops started provocative activities at several points of the border. On the Sikkim border, about which the Chinese have been making baseless and threatening allegations, the Chinese troops crossed the well-known and delimited boundary at Dongchui La and Nathu La on 20th and 21st of September respectively. They fired at our observation posts. They have tried also to intrude into our other territories. Our armed forces have clear instructions to repel the aggressor.
Yesterday we sent a reply to the Chinese note of September 20 in which India was alleged to have intruded into Dum Chale and committed armed provocation. The Chinese charge was rejected as a fabrication and a cover-up for the intrusion and firing at Tsaskur to which I have referred a little while ago.
The House is aware that on September 19, the Chinese Government sent us a note couched in unbecoming language, extending the period of the ultimatum, making demands for destruction of military structures etc. A copy of our reply has been placed on the table of the House together with copies of two other notes we sent yesterday. Regarding the so-called military structures we have already told the Chinese Government that if after joint inspection any structures are found on the Tibetan side of the border there can be no objection to their being demolished. I have been told that China has announced that some of these so-called structures have been destroyed by our troops while withdrawing. All this is a product of their imagination.
I must tell the House that we view with grave concern the Chinese activities on the border and the armed intrusions into our territory. We have urged the Chinese Government in our note of September 21 replying to the Chinese note of September 19 to forsake the path of belligerence and intimidation and return to the path of peace and reason in its relations with India. I hope that even at this late hour China will respond to this call and prevent a major crisis.
We do not know what the Chinese will do next. We have, however, to remain vigilant all along the frontier.
There are times of the greatest trial for the nation, but the people all over the country are now in that mood which alone ensures the preservation of country's freedom. We may have to face many ups and downs, but I know the people have steeled themselves into a resolve to meet even this bigger challenge. On our Armed Forces, there may be a heavier responsibility. I have no doubt that they are in good spirits. We have no intention of underestimating the gravity of the situation. But we have resolved firmly to meet this challenge to our freedom.

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