Recent criticism of performance of Indian Prime Minister in Washington Post and Time magazine has evoked some high profiled response from the Indian Government. The rating downgrades by the International Credit rating companies like Fitch, Moody’s etc, which is a reflection of the performance of the current regime led by Congress Party has also been combatively addressed.
This is perhaps a first in history of Indian government which has taken up the stance for an outsider like PM Manmohan Singh, who does not belong to the Nehru-Gandhi Family. Former Indian diplomat turned politician, member of the Indian National Congress party, Mani Shankar Iyer has claimed on TV debate that it is the routine job of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting to take up such issues with the foreign governments and institutions. However, rest of the panel in the discussion was surprisingly unaware of Iyer’s claims and so is majority of rest of India.
The dig aside, Congress leaders should learn to take the criticisms leveled from rest of the world. India seems to have arrived at the international scene and is not considered a poor nation. The wealthy nation club has been a snobbish lot since time immemorial. British, French, American, Soviet, Chinese, European and Arab media are known to slam one another. Even the world leaders speak in tones which one can safely term ‘unparliamentary.’ You can read them in papers or hear it if the public address system is accidentally on. Indian Prime Ministers like father of modern India PV Narasimha Rao, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, VP Singh and others have taken such criticism in their stride.
The current criticism of Dr Manmohan Singh, who seems to be nothing but the sheep skin of the collective wolves is not without reason. We do it everyday. He is the honest face of the most corrupt government India has ever seen. Asked if the international criticism is valid, most staunch Indian nationalist, the people who abhor foreign interference in Indian Affairs and people who say Indian’s lack pride, will let out a smile.
Even if the I&B ministry decides that admonishing the international press is the right thing, one hopes to see her similarly animated when rest of India is treated the similar way.