New Delhi: BJP national vice president M Chuba Ao has hailed Indian diplomacy under PM Modi and said the manner PM of Papua New Guinea, James Marape, touched PM Modi’s feet shows he trusts the friendship and knows pretty well that Indian leadership has no self-seeking motives.
“In terms of India-Papua New Guinea relations, we have to realise that the country is not Mauritius. The citizens of that country are 98 per cent Christians, and now the people are being asked whether they want the country to be officially declared “a Christian nation”. Hence, PM Marape knew exactly what he was doing at the airport. He is actually a ‘good Prime Minister’ for his tiny nation as he has discovered that India and the Indian PrM’s friendship and assistance to his country have been genuine and not guided by self-seeking motives,” he says in an article.
Many of BJP’s Opponents and PM Modi’s critics would have been rendered in a “shocking state of mind” after Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea James Marape welcomed PM Modi by touching his feet, M Chuba Ao writes.
“We as Indians and as BJP karyakartas feel proud of the occasion as in this country we have seen ‘touch your feet’ exercise merely as a symbol of sycophancy. The Congress party is well known for sycophancy and a number of stories of ‘picking up shoes’ episodes by Congress leaders, even from Indira Gandhi days. Other regional parties also tried the game,” he says, criticising the alleged hero-worship culture vis-a-vis the first political dynasty of the Congress party and some regional parties.
“But in PM Modi’s case, the Prime Minister himself discouraged these at personal levels on a number of occasions. Here, I may also add that ‘touching feet’ is a typical ritual as respect for PM Modi comes naturally to his admirers both within India and also outside. Prime Minister James Marape has proved that,” M Chuba Ao says.
M Chuba Ao, in his article, is also critical of former Union Minister Yashwant Sinha for his remarks on the episode in Papua New Guinea and says, “Yashwant Sinha ji’s remarks suggest he is desperate to please the parties like Trinamool Congress and Congress”.
“In 2021, Yashwant Sinha joined Trinamool Congress and perhaps wanted a Rajya Sabha berth. However, he left in June 2022 as he was selected by the Opposition parties as their presidential candidate last year. He lost the election to BJP-led NDA candidate Droupadi Murmu”.
Yashwant Sinha had sarcastically tweeted: “I plan to contest my next Lok Sabha election from Papua New Guinea on a PM Modi ticket which I hope he will give.”
M Chuba Ao also refers to China’s “great influence on Papua New Guinea” and adds, “There have been reports in western media that dozens of serious issues including mechanical, electrical and fire safety concerns were found with some major buildings constructed by China in that country”.
“We must take note that the Noble Centre, the tallest building in Port Moresby, was built by a Chinese state-owned enterprise and is today ’empty’ because of safety issues. The 23-storey tower has been deemed uninhabitable after the discovery of more than 70 defects. This is the ‘China story of benevolence’ for those who often like to defame India and think Beijing can play saviour to their fortunes”, he notes.
M Chuba Ao, who is also the party in charge of Meghalaya, says – “We have always believed that once PM Modi took over, there was a need for ‘reinvention’ of Indian foreign policy. Before 2014, Congress leaders generally loved presenting India as a weak player….India’s international relations had been ‘mismanaged’ by the previous Governments”.
He also says that the Congress leaders had “failed abroad, as they have at home because they followed Western models”.
Thus he says, “Now, the ‘New India’ has a new vision and a new strategy. India is determined, decisive and very clear about concepts and perceptions. India has emerged as a genuine voice of the Global South, and this is a fact countries such as Papua New Guinea appreciates”.