“I am not familiar with the documentary you are referring to, however, I am very familiar with the shared values that make the United States and India two thriving and vibrant democracies,” the department’s spokesperson said on Monday. US State, Ned Price. responding to a media query about a BBC documentary on Prime Minister Narendra Modi that has sparked controversy since its release.
Speaking at a press briefing on Monday (local time), Price said there are many elements that strengthen the United States’ global strategic partnership with India, including the unusually deep political, economic and ties between the peoples.
Calling India’s democracy vibrant, he said “we look to all that binds us together and we seek to strengthen all those things that bind us together,” while stressing the diplomatic ties the United States and India share.
He also underlined the fact that the partnership that the United States shares with India is exceptionally deep and that the two nations share the common values of American democracy and Indian democracy.
“I’m not aware of this documentary you are quoting, but I will basically say that there are a number of elements that underpin the global strategic partnership that we have with our Indian partners.
There are close political ties, economic ties, and exceptionally deep people-to-people ties between the United States and India. But one of those additional elements are the values that we share, the values common to American democracy and Indian democracy,” he added.
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak last week defended Prime Minister Narendra Modi and distanced himself from the BBC documentary series, saying he “did not agree with the characterization” of his Indian counterpart.
Mr Sunak made the remarks on the controversial documentary which was raised in the UK Parliament by Pakistani-born MP Imran Hussain.
“The UK Government’s position on this is clear and long standing and has not changed, of course we do not condone persecution where it appears anywhere but I am not sure I am of the all agree with the characterization the honorable gentleman has put forward to,” Mr Sunak said when answering Hussain’s question about the BBC report.
UK national broadcaster BBC aired a two-part series attacking Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s tenure as chief minister of Gujarat during the Gujarat riots in 2002. The documentary sparked outrage and was removed from some platforms .
The Department of External Affairs responded to the BBC article saying it was entirely biased.
While addressing a weekly presser in New Delhi, the MEA spokesman
Arindam Bagchi said, “We believe this is a propaganda article.
no objectivity. This is biased. Note that this was not screened in India.
We don’t want to respond to this further so it doesn’t get a lot of dignity.”
He even raised questions about “the purpose of the exercise and the agenda behind it”.
“The documentary is a reflection of the agency and the individuals who are re-peddling this narrative. It makes us question the purpose of the exercise and the agenda behind it; frankly, we don’t wish to honor these efforts,” he added.
Referring to apparent remarks made by former UK secretary Jack Straw in the documentary series, Mr Bagchi said: “He (Jack Straw) appears to be referring to an internal UK report. How can I access it “He’s a 20-year-old. report. Why would we jump on it now? Just because Jack Straw says so, how do they lend him so much legitimacy.
“I’ve heard words like investigation and investigations. There’s a reason we use the colonial mindset. Mr. Bagchi asked.
Prominent British citizens of Indian origin have condemned the series. Prominent British citizen Lord Rami Ranger said that “the BBC has caused great harm to over a billion Indians”.
In addition, the US department spokesperson also said that the United States has always called for regional stability in South Asia and that its relationship with India and Pakistan is self-sustaining.
He further said that the pace and scope of dialogue between India and Pakistan is clearly the business of the two countries.
“We have long called for regional stability in South Asia. Our relations with India and Pakistan are independent and we do not see them as a zero-sum game. But the pace, scope and character of any India-Pakistan dialogue is a matter for both countries,” Price said during the briefing.
(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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