National

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has ‘soft spot’ for China, says Congress

Senior Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi. File

Senior Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi. File   | Photo Credit: G. Ramakrishna

Lists Chinese firms who have donated to PMCARES

The Congress on Sunday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of having a “soft spot” for China and listed out the firms that are fully or partially owned by Chinese companies which have recently donated to the PMCARES fund, instituted by the Prime Minister’s Office in wake of COVID-19 pandemic

On Saturday, BJP President J.P. Nadda had alleged that Rajiv Gandhi Foundation headed by Congress President Sonia Gandhi every year had received donations from the Chinese embassy between 2005-09.

Also read: BJP chief Nadda launches sharp attack on Congress after party’s remarks on govt’s handling of LAC situation

In a counter attack, the Congress on Sunday, said that the BJP has been targeting Congress to distract from the reality of Chinese transgressions in Galwan Valley, Pangong Tso Lake area, Hot Springs and Depsang Plains upto Y-Junction. 

‘Diversionary tactics’

“Every time the Modi government is questioned on the Chinese transgressions of our territory a deceptive Modi government and a paranoid BJP resorts to diversionary tactics and disinformation. Let them know that the Congress party will keep asking these questions in national interest,” said Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi. Mr. Singhvi, who tested COVID-19 positive, spoke via video conference from a quarantine facility. 

PM Modi’s statement of claiming no intrusion or occupation by the Chinese in Indian territory was the “greatest disservice to the nation” Mr. Singhvi said. “As we all know the Prime Minister has a special soft spot for China. Even as Chief Minister of Gujarat, we saw his close association in his four Chinese visits. He is the only Prime Minister who has visited China five times,” he added. 

Mr. Singhvi pointed out that many Chinese firms and Indian firms which are partially owned or funded by Chinese companies like — telecom companies Huawei (donated ₹7 crore), Xiaomi (₹15 crore) and OPPO (₹1 crore) have donated to PM CARE Fund. Paytm which donated ₹100 crore to PM CARE has 38% Chinese ownership. Similarly Chinese social media firm TikTok donated ₹30 crore. So far, as per the government ₹9,678 crore has been collected under this fund. 

‘No oversight’

“No one knows how PMCARES is controlled or money given to it is utilised. The Fund is not even subjected to audit by any public authority including CAG. PMO has gone to the extent of saying this Fund is not a public authority. PMCARES Fund is not even subjected to RTI. All in all, the Fund appears to be solely run by the Prime Minister in an opaque and secret fashion with zero transparency and zero accountability,” Mr. Singhvi said.

Later in a series of tweets senior Congress leader P Chidambaram said, that the PM-CARES fund was set up after Chinese intrusions into Depsang (2013), Chumar (2014) and Doklam (2017). He asked, “Why did the PM accept funds from Chinese-owned funds, one of which has a deep connection with the Chinese Army, the PLA?” 

Adding further he said that in 2005, India-China relations were good and efforts were being made to improve them. If a donation in 2005 (to the Congress's Rajiv Gandhi Foundation) was wrong, how much more wrong was accepting donations after 2013-17? 

“PM-CARES fund was set up on 28-03-2020. Chinese-owned companies donated money from that date. Chinese troops began incursions into Ladakh in March-April 2020. Does it require great intelligence to discern China’s motives?” Mr Chidambaram said. 

The Congress asked Mr. Modi to explain why despite overt Chinese hostilities, he has received the Chinese money into the Fund. They also questioned the Prime Minister’s office asking whether the donations received in the PM National Relief Fund too have been diverted to PMCARES Fund.

“If Prime Minister of India will compromise his position by accepting donations of hundreds of crores from Chinese companies in the controversial and opaque Fund, how will he defend the country against the Chinese aggression? Prime Minister Modi needs to answer,” Mr. Singhvi said. 

 

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Jul 11, 2020 5:54:17 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/prime-minister-narendra-modi-has-soft-spot-for-china-says-congress/article31939070.ece

Next Story