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Not saying because he is PM: Jaishankar on Modi; ‘I think best diplomat is…’



Not saying because he is PM: Jaishankar on Modi; ‘I think best diplomat is…’

Not saying because he is PM: Jaishankar on Modi; ‘I think best diplomat is…’

Jaishankar said a leader like PM Modi both grounded and visionary comes once in a lifetime.

Interacting with the Indian community in Bangkok, foreign minister S Jaishankar said the extraordinary thing about PM Modi is that he gets the pulse of so many things which he turns into policies and programmes. On his journey from being a diplomat to a politician, Jaishankar said as a diplomat he always worked with the politicians but entering the relentless, 24x7 world of politics with no weekend is different.

“I feel it’s been an enormous good fortune of the country to have someone like PM Modi at this time. And I am not saying this because he is the prime minister of the day and I am a member of his Cabinet. I am saying this because when you have a once-in-a-century health challenge, it’s only someone who’s so grounded can say okay there is a health challenge, but what will do for the persons going home; what will you do to feed them; how will you put money into their account. The idea that women will manage the money better will not occur to many people,” Jaishankar said.

“Good leaders are people very grounded, very experienced with an enormous feel for what is happening but who also has the passion to take the country to a different level — enormously grounded and enormously visionary. And such people, I can tell you, come once in a lifetime,” Jaishankar said.

‘The best diplomat ever is…’

The foreign minister said according to him the best diplomat of all times is Lord Hanuman. Answering a question on a book that he wrote earlier, Jaishankar said, “I was usefully employed during the gap year between my diplomat career and the entry into politics and I wrote a book at that time on how Mahabharata can serve as a guide to deal with international politics. Mahabharata is like statecraft but if you see Ramayana too if you ask me who I think is the best diplomat, my answer will be no question, Lord Hanuman. You are setting out on behalf of Lord Rama, but let us take that as a country, into the unknown dealing with another entity where you don’t have that much information…You have to go there, find intelligence, locate Sita…he surreptitiously sets contact with Sita, keeps her morale high, sets the place on fire which is not my prescription for diplomats… but if you look at the totality, he comes back successfully.”

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