External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Tuesday hit back at Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan for the Marxist veteran's dig at him for his three-day visit to the southern state, saying that "people should not be so insecure." Hours after Vijayan criticized that the External Affairs Minister's Kerala visit was with an eye on the Lok Sabha polls to be held in 2024, Jaishankar responded by saying that he undertook a tour to the southern state to get a good understanding of what is happening on the ground.
"If getting a good understanding of what is happening on the ground is politically motivated, then I think my political motivation and his may be different", Jaishankar said responding to a query in a meet-the-press programme organised by the press club and journalists' union here.
Earlier in the day, while speaking at a programme, Vijayan specially mentioned about the External Affairs Minister's recent inspection of the Kazhakuttom flyover on the National Highway-66 here, which is under construction, and said the "chethovikaram" (can be loosely translated as 'true intention') behind the visit was understandable. "When it is said that a minister who is entrusted to have a look at world affairs went to inspect the flyover at Kazhakuttom, the people of the state can understand the real intention behind it. We should realise that it was not just to have a look at the flyover," Vijayan said.
After 10-18 months, elections would be held across the country and it was heard that the responsibility to ensure the victory of the BJP candidate in this Lok Sabha seat was entrusted to Jaishankar, the CM said with a smile. Asked about the CM's comment that his visit was a politically motivated one, Jaishankar said "People should not be so insecure".
The Union Minister said in a democracy everybody has a right to do politics and his engagements were also devoted to monitoring, to assessing and to learning from various initiatives Prime Minister Narendra Modi has undertaken for the betterment of the country.
"Maybe you can read politics if some colony is connected with water. Maybe you can read politics because somebody's house is being made or electricity is being given or during Covid we provided food and resources to the people. We call it development, if other people want to call it politics, that is their privilege," said Jaishankar who was on a three-day visit to the southern state since Sunday.
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