Forty Years Ago: March 16, 1979
India and the Soviet Union today demanded “an immediate, unconditional and total withdrawal of Chinese troops from the territory of Vietnam.” A joint communique issued at the end of the Soviet Premier, Alexie Kosygin’s six-day official visit, also stressed that the “two sides considered it necessary to exert further efforts in the interest of strengthening peace in the Asian continent, of developing cooperation among all Asian countries on the principles of sovereign equality and independence, non-use of force, inviolability of frontiers, territorial integrity of states, no interference into internal affairs and on other generally recognised principles of inter-state relations”. The two sides also favoured a “comprehensive and just settlement of the West Asian problem on the basis of the complete withdrawal of Israeli troops from all Arab territories occupied in 1967, the securing of the legitimate rights of the Arab people of Palestine, including their right to establish their own state as well as the ensuring for all states in the area the right of independent existence and development”.
Chinese officials were quoted as saying that their troops would remain “several kilometres’’ inside Vietnam in some areas. Vietnam charged that Peking’s soldiers had left a swath of destruction along the frontier and were moving boundary markers deep into its territory. Vietnam’s latest battle report said Chinese forces had shelled areas south of Cao Bang, 190 km north of Hanoi.
A delegation of Meerut citizens called on Prime Minister Morarji Desai and apprised him of the facts about the reported mass copying by students. The six-member delegation was led by Meerut Sarvodaya worker, Master Sunder Lal. The prime minister, it is understood, assured the deputation that stern action would be taken against the institutions allowing copying.