India’s External Affairs Ministry calls out Prime Minister Lee for saying ‘nearly half of his MPs have criminal charges pending against them’

New Delhi – India’s External Affairs Ministry told Singapore High Commissioner Simon Wong on Friday that Singapore’s Prime Minister’s recent “remarks (on India) were unwarranted”.

He also expressed India’s official displeasure with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s statement to Parliament that “nearly half of Lok Sabha MPs have criminal charges pending against them”.

In a 40-minute speech during Tuesday’s debate on the Privileges Committee report on the Raeesah Khan saga, Prime Minister Lee said: “Things are starting with passionate intensity. The leaders, who fought for independence and won it, are often exceptional individuals of great courage, immense culture and exceptional ability. They passed through the fiery crucible and became rulers of men and nations. They are the David Ben Gurions, the Jawaharlal Nehrus, and we have our own as well”.

Mr. David Ben-Gurion led the struggle to found the State of Israel and served as its very first Prime Minister of Israel. Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru led India to independence and became India’s first Prime Minister.

Prime Minister Lee continued, “Nehru’s India has become one where, according to the media, nearly half of Lok Sabha MPs have criminal charges pending against them, including charges of rape and murder. . Although it is also said that many of these allegations are politically motivated”.

According to an article by The economic periodIndia’s MEA was surprised by Mr Lee’s comments coming from a close strategic partner and a leader whose family has shared close ties with India for decades.

Singapore, he added, is among those countries that barely refer to other countries’ internal affairs and have a nuanced approach to geopolitics.

The other country that might take offense to Prime Minister Lee’s remarks is Israel.

Prime Minister Lee also mentioned that “Ben-Gurion’s Israel has turned into an Israel that can barely form a government, despite four general elections in two years. Meanwhile, a flood of senior politicians and officials in Israel face a litany of criminal charges, some have gone to jail.” /TISG

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Shirlene J. Manley