Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor Saturday said that Pakistan is the “least qualified” country to criticise India on the Kashmir issue, especially in the context of their record in the Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) region. Tharoor, who was speaking at the Pune International Literature Festival, said, “I feel Pakistan is the least qualified country to criticise India on the Kashmir issue. Look at what they have done to PoK (Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir).”
He also asserted that the Congress party may have differences with the Narendra Modi-led BJP government within the country but when it comes to the national interest, it is neither BJP’s nor Congress’ foreign policy but India’s.
“I would like to send an implicit message outside. We may have differences within our country but when it comes to India’s interest, it is not BJP’s foreign policy nor is it Congress’ foreign policy. It is the Indian foreign policy,” Tharoor was quoted as saying.
The former Union Minister also said that he has the right to criticise the government on the prevailing condition in J&K on the basis of the treatment meted out to the people and elected representatives of the state.
No space for tolerance, just ‘black or white’ in India now
Speaking at the event, the former Union Minister said that India is now a country with just “black or white” as choices and that there is no space in between for tolerance. Hitting out at the BJP, Tharoor said politics in India stood polarised particularly because of the actions and choices of the ruling party. “As a result, the people of the country have been divided into black and white and there is no shade in between which is called tolerance,” he was quoted saying by PTI.
Modi must be given his due as democratically elected PM
Tharoor, while talking about Modi said that Narendra Modi must be given his due as a democratically elected prime minister despite whether one like his politics or not.
“Whether we like his politics or not, nonetheless he is the democratically elected PM of the country and when he goes abroad, he is PM of India and he carries my flag. I want him to be received and treated with the respect due to my country’s prime minister,” he said, adding that his comments not only reflect respect for the institution of prime minister but also show respect to the Indian voter.
(Inputs from PTI)