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Jaishankar hails government for reaching out to Indians in trouble, cites coronavirus evacuation

NEW DELHI: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Sunday hailed the Modi government for reaching out to Indians in trouble anywhere in the world as he cited the effort to evacuate more than 600 Indians from the coronavirus-hit Chinese city of Wuhan.

Jaishankar also said that he joined politics as he saw a government for which reform and change means nutrition, mother’s health, girl’s education, middle-class services and reaching out to the last man in the queue.

Speaking at an event of the Tamil Association here, he said earlier the approach was to push problems as nobody was willing to take difficult decisions.

In this context, Jaishankar highlighted the abrogation of Article 370 and bringing in the amended citizenship act.

“Everybody knows Article 370 was a 70-year problem. It was a temporary provision of the Constitution. For 70 years this provision continued as temporary,” he said lauding the government for doing away with it.

“From Gandhi ji to all our leaders have said we have to do something about” persecuted minorities from neighbouring countries, the Union minister said.

“…Where will these minorities go, but our habit has been somebody will deal with it and while there is a problem let us push it down,” Jaishankar said.

“So today you have a caring government, a government with courage which will take decisions,” he said.

Talking about the reasons for his joining the government, he also said that under this government, a system was developed by which any Indian in trouble, anywhere in the world, could be looked after.

“We are there for them. People today when they go out, they go out with more confidence that if something will happen, their government will be there to back them,” he said.

For example, many Indian students were there in the Chinese city of Wuhan and the government has worked really hard and brought back the second batch of students on Sunday, he added.

On Sunday, 323 more Indians and seven Maldivians were brought back by air from the Chinese city, the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak, taking the number of evacuees to 654.

“Today this feeling is there: (They are) our people, (and) our responsibility. We will take care of our people,” Jaishankar said.