External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar   |  Photo Credit: IANS
New Delhi: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar came down heavily on western human rights and democratic institutions, especially Sweden’s V-Dem Institute and US government-funded NGO Freedom House, which downgraded India in “democracy rankings”, branding them as hypocrites.
Speaking at an event organised by a media house, Jaishankar slammed the international organisations criticising India, saying that “self-appointed custodians of the world who find it very difficult to stomach that somebody in India is not looking for their approval”.
“It is hypocrisy. We have a set of self-appointed custodians of the world who find it very difficult to stomach that somebody in India is not looking for their approval, is not willing to play the game they want to play. So they invent their rules, their parameters, pass their judgments and make it look as if it is some kind of global exercise,” the external affairs minister said.
The union minister highlighted the Modi government’s efforts to supply COVID-19 vaccines to around 70 countries across the world. Taking a dig at some of the organisations which term the Modi government as “nationalist”, Jaishankar questioned the contribution of “internationalist countries” in regards to the coronavirus vaccines.
“We are supposed to be the ‘Hindu nationalist party’, right? We have given vaccines to 70 countries in the world. Tell me, how many vaccines have the internationalist countries given? Which one of these countries have said that while I vaccinate my own people, I will inoculate other people who need it as much as we do. Where are these people?” he asked.
It may be noted, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had claimed that India was “no longer” a democratic country while citing reports on Swedish Institute’s democracy report that has downgraded India from ‘world’s largest democracy to ‘electoral democracy’.
Also, Freedom House has claimed that “political rights and civil liberties have eroded in India since Narendra Modi became prime minister in 2014”.