Guwahati: China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Thursday handed over a 17-year-old youth who it had reportedly captured from Arunachal Pradesh on 18 January to the Indian Army.
Arunachal Pradesh MP Kiren Rijiju, who is also the Union law minister, in a tweet wrote that the PLA had handed over the “young boy” to the Indian Army. “Due procedures are being followed including the medical examination,” he added.
In a following tweet, Rijiju shared pictures of the teen with Army officials at the Wacha-Damai interaction point. “I thank our proud Indian Army for pursuing the case meticulously with PLA and safely securing our young boy back home,” he wrote.
The Chinese PLA handed over the young boy from Arunachal Pradesh Shri Miram Taron to Indian Army at WACHA-DAMAI interaction point in Arunachal Pradesh today.
I thank our proud Indian Army for pursuing the case meticulously with PLA and safely securing our young boy back home 🇮🇳 pic.twitter.com/FyiaM4wfQk
— Kiren Rijiju (@KirenRijiju) January 27, 2022
The 17-year-old, Miram Taron, went missing from the Lungta Jor area in the state’s Upper Siang district while on a hunting trip.
A Global Times report Thursday quoted a statement by Senior Colonel Long Shaohua, a spokesperson at the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Western Theatre Command, who said that Taron had been found by Chinese border defence troops during a recent patrol in Medog County in Xizang — China’s name for its Tibet Autonomous Region.
“The Chinese border defence troops carried out a routine inquiry and an epidemic prevention quarantine, and provided humanitarian aid,” the statement further said. It added, “We urge the Indian side to strictly abide by the bilateral protocols and agreements, enhance personnel management and control, and practically safeguard the normal order in the border region.”
A tense few days
News of the youth’s alleged abduction had gone viral on social media after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Arunachal East, Tapir Gao, tweeted about the issue on 19 January, seeking intervention by government agencies “to step up for his early release”.
Chinese #PLA has abducted Sh Miram Taron, 17 years of Zido vill. yesterday 18th Jan 2022 from inside Indian territory, Lungta Jor area (China built 3-4 kms road inside India in 2018) under Siyungla area (Bishing village) of Upper Siang dist, Arunachal Pradesh. pic.twitter.com/ecKzGfgjB7
— Tapir Gao (@TapirGao) January 19, 2022
Gao’s tweet was also shared by Congress leaders Abhishek Manu Singhvi and Randeep Singh Surjewala, who were critical of the Narendra Modi government over the incident, while former Congress president Rahul Gandhi attacked Prime Minister Modi for his “silence” on the issue.
China denied the kidnapping charge, saying that it only “cracks down on illegal border entry and exit”. Citing the Chinese foreign ministry, the state-run Global Times said in a tweet on 21 January, “The PLA controls the border according to law and cracks down on illegal border entry and exit.”
Then, on 23 January, China confirmed that it had found the missing boy.
Rijiju in a tweet Wednesday wrote of a “hotline exchange” between the Indian Army and the PLA, saying that the latter had “responded positively” and was likely to “intimate date and time soon”.
Hotline exchanged on Republic Day by Indian Army with Chinese PLA. PLA responded positively indicating handing over of our national and suggested a place of release. They are likely to intimate date and time soon. Delay attributed to bad weather conditions on their side. https://t.co/CX7pu2jIRV
— Kiren Rijiju (@KirenRijiju) January 26, 2022
(Edited by Rohan Manoj)
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