As the armies of India and China remain locked in a standoff along the LAC near the southern bank of Pangong Tso, a clip of Chinese tourists enjoying a boat ride in the disputed lake has gone viral on social media.
It is being said that the short video was shot at India's side of Pangong Tso, thus, implying that the Chinese tourists visited Indian territory amid the border tensions.
In the 40-second footage, a bunch of Chinese nationals can be seen riding a boat in Pangong Tso without any worry even as the situation remains tense at the India-China border.
Congress leader Salman Nizami shared the clip with the claim that Chinese tourists were spotted in Indian territory. Referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi as "56-inch Chowkidar", he questioned whether Indians would now require a visa to visit Pangong Tso.
"Chinese tourists in Ladakh's Pangong Lake. Can someone ask '56 inch' Chowkidar if Indians now need a visa to visit Pangong Lake?" Nizami wrote.
Furthermore, National Convener of Congress' Social Media Department Saral Patel too shared the video with a similar claim. Subsequently, a host of Twitter users fell for the narrative and further circulated the clip, slamming the Narendra Modi-led Indian government for not being able to tackle Chinese aggression.
International Business Times, India, found out the claims made regarding the video in question to be completely baseless.
Firstly, it should be noted that the LAC passes through Pangong Lake, dividing it into two parts. While India controls about 45 kilometres or one-third portion of the 135-kilometre long lake, the rest of it lies in Chinese occupied Tibet.
Secondly, India does not allow civilian boats in Pangong Tso at all and so no tourist can for a boat ride on the Indian side of the lake.
Now, it is pertinent to know that China recently opened its side of Pangong Tso to domestic as well as international tourists. A journalist working for China's state-affiliated media had tweeted to inform about the same. He also shared a video of the lake which had similar views and a similar yacht as in the viral clip.
"Actually, #PangongTso in #China is open to tourists at home and abroad for quite a long time. The lake is near Chinese national highway, a good place for self-driving travel. We have a resort on the lake there," the journalist said in his tweet.
Therefore, it can be concluded that false claims are being made on social media that the video was shot on the Indian side of Pangong Tso as it was actually recorded on Chinese territory.