‘Can’t be serious’: EAM says govt not aware of RaGa’s White House meet

Dr Jaishankar also slammed Rahul Gandhi for ridiculing Indian democracy on foreign soil

| Updated: 09 June, 2023 12:55 pm IST

NEW DELHI: The Modi government is not aware of any meeting between Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and White House officials in the US, external affairs minister (EAM) Dr S Jaishankar said on Thursday.

According to media reports, the disqualified Lok Sabha lawmaker met some officials of the White House in Washington DC. Gandhi is currently on a visit to the US, and has held some town hall interactions with the Indian diaspora and intellectuals.

“I can’t believe you’re serious. But, you know, I mean, look, if Rahul Gandhi goes somewhere, I mean, that is Rahul Gandhi’s call,” Dr Jaishankar said in response to a question regarding the meeting.

He further said, “You know, why would, I have to, sort of, to get involved in it at all? So I don’t even know, frankly, what he did or what he didn’t do.”

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Reports claimed that Gandhi visited the White House during his trip to the United States and met with Donald Lu, assistant secretary of state for South Asia at the State Department. The meeting, which was not officially reported, has raised questions.

During his visit, Gandhi repeatedly raised concerns about the state of Indian democracy, while the White House recently referred to India as a vibrant democracy. Throughout his 10-day trip, Rahul Gandhi engaged in discussions with academics, IT professionals, and members of think tanks.

Earlier this week, Gandhi’s comments on the state of Indian democracy faced strong criticism from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which accused him of shamelessly discrediting Indian democracy while abroad.

ALSO READ: EAM Jaishankar slams Rahul Gandhi’s persistent attacks on India abroad

External affairs minister Dr Jaishankar criticized the Gandhi scion on Thursday for his habit of discrediting India overseas. He emphasized that taking national politics abroad is not in the interest of the country. When asked about Gandhi’s harsh criticism of the Modi administration in the US, Jaishankar mentioned that he had no issues with matters concerning India but argued that it was inappropriate to discuss domestic affairs on foreign soil.

“Rahul Gandhi has a habit of criticizing the country and making comments on our politics whenever he goes abroad. The world is looking at us, and what the world is seeing? Elections are held in the country, and sometimes one party wins, and at times, the other party wins,” he stated.

“If there is no democracy in the country, such changes should not occur,” added Jaishankar.


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