India on Thursday termed as “uncalled for” Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s remarks in which he had referred to “Nehru’s India” and to criminal charges faced by MPs. The matter has been taken up with the Singaporean side, sources said.
The Singapore PM had referred to India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru in the context of working of democracies during debate on the report of the committee of privileges of Parliament. He had also referred to media reports about pending cases against Lok Sabha MPs. “The remarks by the Prime Minister of Singapore were uncalled for. We are taking up the matter with the Singaporean side,” a source said.
“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,” Loong said, adding that “it is also said that many of these allegations are politically motivated”.
“Most countries are founded and start off on the basis of high ideals and noble values. But more often than not, beyond the founding leaders and the pioneer generation, over decades and generations, gradually things change,” Lee said.
“Things start off with a 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 added.