“The remarks by the prime minister of Singapore were uncalled for. We are taking up the matter with the Singaporean side,” said sources.
The high commissioner of Singapore to India, Simon Wong was called by the ministry of external affairs over Loong’s remarks.
The Singapore PM had invoked Jawaharlal Nehru while highlighting how democracy should work in the city-state during a debate in parliament.
“Things start off with passionate intensity. The leaders, who fought for and won independence, are often exceptional individuals of great courage, immense culture, and outstanding ability. They came through the crucible of fire and emerged as leaders of men and nations. They are the David Ben-Gurions, the Jawaharlal Nehrus, and we have our own too,” he said.
“While Nehru’s India has become one where, according to media reports, almost half the MPs in the Lok Sabha have criminal charges pending against them, including charges of rape and murder. Though it is also said that many of these allegations are politically motivated,” Lee said during the debate.
Reacting to the Singapore PM’s speech and mention of Jawaharlal Nehru, the Congress said while the country’s first premier continues to inspire world leaders even today, PM Narendra Modi denigrates him inside and outside of Parliament.
“Pandit Nehru’s magnanimity continues to inspire world leaders even today. Pity the ones here at home who fail to have the vision to understand the exceptional leader he was,” the Congress said on its Twitter handle.
Senior party leader and former Union minister Jairam Ramesh shared a video clip of Lee Hsien Loong’s speech and said, “Singapore PM invokes Nehru to argue how democracy should work during a parliamentary debate whereas our PM denigrates Nehru all the time inside and outside Parliament.”
The Indian Overseas Congress also said on Twitter, “Nehru stands tall as an epitome of democracy! Listen to PM of Singapore who refers to Nehru when he speaks about building a democratic society. Hope our PM listens to it.”
Nehru stands Tall as an epitome of democracy! Listen to PM of Singapore who refers to Nehru when he speaks about… https://t.co/nV408HelVV
— Indian Overseas Congress (@INCOverseas) 1645088293000
– With agency inputs