Political effort to tarnish image of government: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar in US

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New Delhi, May 27

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar has alleged “a political effort” to tarnish the government’s image and said there is a difference between the political imagery that has been “concocted” and the actual governance record.

“I would be very open about it. I mean these are people (in the government at the Centre) who perhaps are less from the English-speaking world, less connected to other global centres. So there is a difference. And I think sometimes that difference is judged politically harshly and it is often used to create a certain narrative,” he said during a conversation in New York with one of Trump’s US National Security Advisors Gen HR McMaster.

“I would certainly see that very much as part of a political effort to depict our government in a certain way and obviously I have a very profound difference with that. We Indians are extremely confident about our democracy… India is a deeply pluralistic society,” he said in response to McMaster asking if Hindutva policies could undermine the secular nature of Indian democracy and whether India’s friends are right to be concerned about recent trends.

“…there is a difference between the political imagery that has been concocted and actually the governance record out there,” he said.

Jaishankar is in the US to hold talks on bilateral issues, but the top three in the State Department, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, are on overseas tours. — TNS

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