NEW DELHI–India’s officials of Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) were seen red faced as Indian Premier continues to make blunders during US President Barack Obama’s India visit.
Very well placed and reliable sources in the MEA, on condition of not to be quoted told The Daily Mail that MEA officials and especially the officials from the Protocol Wing of the Ministry and those from the US Desk are reported to be very annoyed and deeply embarrassed as their Prime Minister opted to ignore their guidelines of protocol for conduct during the US President’s visit and instead preferred the suggestions, made by hardcore Hindutva activist and handpicked National Security Advisor Ajit Kumar Doval. “Even the Foreign Minister Madame Sushma found herself extremely helpless in motivating the Premier to follow the MEA’s protocol guidelines during Obama’s tour. Ajit Doval is a former cop and a veteran intelligence specialist. He is far, far away from diplomatic norms and State-level protocol. He runs everything and every show with an intelligence perspective. It was his suggestion as the NSA to PMO that an expression should be conveyed by the Prime Minister during the US President’s visit that both, the Indian Prime Minister and US President, are very close friends and enjoy very casual relations without official formalities. It was Doval who suggested that Prime Minister should address the US President with his first name “Barack” while the MEA had clearly submitted that the US guest must be addressed as Mr. President or Mr. Obama. But Doval’s suggestion was taken by the PMO. It was highly embarrassing when the US President responded to again and again use of Barack by our Prime Minister by saying that though I and Mr. Prime Minister know each other for a very little time, yet we are good friends. This was actually a very polite reminder by the US President to our Prime Minister that the necessary protocol be maintained. At no occasion, the US President has so far addressed our Prime Minister as Modi or Narendra but kept addressing him as Mr. Prime Minister or using other titles that are part of State Protocols,” said the sources. The sources also said that mentioning of holding very occasional off the cuff chit chat with US President by Indian Premier was also a shocker for the MEA and was not appreciated by the concerned US officials of visiting President’s delegation. He said that apart from these issues, many other blunders were made by the Indian Premier during delegation level talks and during different State banquets. The MEA sources say the entire visit of the US President was hosted and conducted completely to the contrary of MEA but with a typical ‘desi’ style to the intelligence-based plans of NSA as MEA was even against receiving of the US guest at the airport by Prime Minister himself as Indian Prime Minister was received by an Under Secretary level official of the Obama government during his last year’s visit to the US.
Sep 28, 2016 0
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