Rahul Gandhi evokes Jaishankar’s ire after remarks on Indian diplomats being “arrogant”


Congress leader Rahul Gandhi having a conversation at the 'Ideas for India' conclave, in London on Friday. (ANI Photo/ANI Pics Service)

Amit Shah on Sunday said the Wayanad MP must take off his Italian glasses and look at the development work done by Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Our Bureau
London/New Delhi

Hitting out at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi over his remarks concerning “complete change” in the Indian Foreign Service (IFS), External Minster S Jaishankar has said that the change is not called “arrogance” but “confidence and defending national interest”. The remarks came after Rahul Gandhi said at an event in London that he had been told by bureaucrats in Europe that IFS has changed and the officers are “arrogant”. Jaishankar said in a tweet that the IFS officers follow the orders of the government and protect national interest while countering arguments of others.

“Yes, the Indian Foreign Service has changed. Yes, they follow the orders of the Government. Yes, they counter the arguments of others. No, it’s not called Arrogance. It is called Confidence. And it is called defending National Interest,” Jaishankar said.

He also attached a clip of Rahul Gandhi’s remarks. In his remarks at the ‘Ideas for India’ conference in London, Gandhi said he had been told that IFS officers do not listen to anything, they were just getting orders from the government and there is no conversation.

“I was talking to some bureaucrats from Europe and they were saying that the Indian Foreign Service has completely changed and they don’t listen to anything — they are arrogant. Now they just telling us what orders they are getting, there is no conversation; you can’t do that,” Rahul Gandhi said.

Party general secretary Randeep Singh Surjewala retorted to Jaishankar’s remarks on Gandhi’s tweet and said there had been foreign policy bloopers. “Yes, it is also called being subservient to the political masters in face of foreign policy bloopers. Yes, it is called not being able to stand up to China in face of illegal occupation of our territory. Yes, it is called furthering the agenda of a party rather than the Nation,” Surjewala said in a tweet.

In his remarks at London event, Rahul Gandhi also accused the Centre of promoting “massive concentration of power and capital”.

Minister of External Affairs S. Jaishankar (ANI Photo)

“I think it’s very dangerous for one company to control all airports, all ports, all the infrastructure. It (private sector monopoly) has never existed in this form. It has never existed with such a massive concentration of power and capital. This is another aspect that is throttling the conversation because the current Indian government is controlling the media through this concentration of capital,” he said.

Rahul Gandhi said Congress believes that every single Indian should be given the same opportunities.”

“The task for the Opposition is really to give a new vision to the people of India, an economic vision. Congress has the ideology at the national level. Congress is a structure that is enabling the Opposition. The ideological battle that is taking place is between the national vision of the RSS and the national vision of Congress,” he said.

Later, Rahul Gandhi on Friday said that democracy in India is a global public good and the people of the country have managed democracy at an unparalleled scale.

Rahul Gandhi made the remarks at the ‘Ideas for India’ conference in London. “Democracy in India is a global public good. We’re the only people who have managed democracy at our unparalleled scale. Had an enriching exchange on a wide range of topics at the #IdeasForIndia conference in London,” Gandhi said in a tweet.

The Congress leader will be speaking at Cambridge University on May 23 on ‘India at 75’.

This is the first such overseas event for the Congress leader after the return of normalcy in international travel which had been disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, taking a potshot at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who is currently in the UK, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday said the Wayanad MP must take off his Italian glasses and look at the development work done by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Pema Khandu in Arunachal Pradesh.

Shah inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of various development projects worth Rs 1,000 crores in the Namsai district. Speaking on the occasion, the Union Home Minister Shah said, “Congress leaders ask what happened in eight years, these people are awake with their eyes closed. Rahul baba must take off his Italian glasses and look at the development work done by PM Modi and Chief Minister Pema Khandu.”

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