Modi US visa row: Disgrace to nation’s pride

Updated: Jul 24, 2013, 16:16 PM IST

Amidst the din surrounding countless scams, blunders and negligence on the part of the central government, the letter addressed to US President Barack Obama signed by 65 Indian Members of Parliament to deny Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi a US visa has marked a new low in Indian politics.

Every nation has internal disputes to deal with, but when domestic squabbles go beyond geographical boundaries, they may lead to the following inferences:

a) India, as the world’s largest democracy is incompetent to tackle its internal conflicts and hence wants an outsider to intervene.

b) Indian politicians have least inhibition before they resort to uncivil ways to malign the image of the country.

c) Political interest is greater than national interest.

d) And last but not the least, MPs have absolutely no respect to the Constitution of India, else they wouldn’t have insulted a leader who has been democratically elected as Chief Minister for the third consecutive time.

It would be better if one could settle political scores within the country and not take it beyond national boundaries. Washing dirty linen in front of the global community smacks of political vendetta and is thoroughly disgraceful to ethos of the world’s largest democracy.

Modi has been denied visa to the US for his alleged role in the 2002 Gujarat riots. However, the special investigating team (SIT) appointed by the Supreme Court has refuted his involvement.

Nonetheless, Modi’s name has been dragged time and again in this case by his opponents and this time, they have resorted to seeking third party involvement.

Political parties may have the authority to sling mud at the opposition but going overboard in expressing their vengeance is taking politics a little too far.

The 65 MPs have found support from secular Indian American groups.

The groups have argued that "human rights are universal". These groups have reportedly been in the forefront of the anti-Modi campaign for more than eight years now. They have been successful in convincing the US to deny visa to the Gujarat CM.

The nation has never witnessed such unabashed display of political vengeance on foreign platform ever before, opening up our political sovereignty to challenge from outside.

"It is almost unthinkable that Indian lawmakers would appeal to the United States to take a stand on an internal matter. Most Indian politicians, many of whom still nurse a Cold War-era suspicion of Washington, would bristle at the very thought of it," The Washington Post observed.

India’s dreams of emerging as a superpower in the 21st century and such irresponsible behaviour will only make the nation a laughing stock.

The nation has witnessed a number of communal riots since partition. And justice ought to be meted out to each and every victim. Yes, culprits must be brought to book but “human rights” is not limited to 2002 riots alone.

Politicians may sling mud at each other but dirtying the image of the nation in front of the international community is an act of idiocy. National pride must be above political interests.

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