SYDNEY: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Saturday termed billionaire investor George Soros as an "old, rich opinionated person" who still thinks that his views should determine how the entire world works.
Addressing a session with Australian Minister Chris Brown at the Raisina@Sydney Dialogue , Jaishankar said,"Mr Soros is an old, rich opinionated person sitting in New York who still thinks that his views should determine how the entire world works...such people actually invest resources in shaping narratives."
"People like him think an election is good if the person they want to see, wins and if the election throws up a different outcome then they will say it is a flawed democracy and the beauty is that all this is done under the pretence of advocacy of open society," the external affairs minister said.
Soros had in his remarks at the Munich Security Conference this Thursday said, "Adani is accused of stock manipulation and his stock collapsed like a house of cards. Modi is silent on the subject, but he will have to answer questions from foreign investors and in Parliament." Terming Modi and Adani as "close allies," whose "fate is intertwined", the 92-year-old billionaire investor said, "This will significantly weaken Modi's stranglehold on India's federal government and open the door to push for much-needed institutional reforms."
"I may be naive, but I expect a democratic revival in India," Soros said in his remarks delivered at the 2023 Munich Security Conference. In Sydney, Jaishankar today said, "When I look at my own democracy, I've today a voter turnout, which is unprecedented, electoral outcomes which are decisive, electoral process which is not questioned. We're not one of those countries where after elections, somebody goes to arbitrate in court."
"Mr Soros said India is a democratic country but he doesn't think the Prime minister of India is a democrat. He earlier accused us of planning to strip millions Muslims of their citizenship which of course didn't happen, it was a ridiculous suggestion," the external affairs minister said.
Globalisation, Jaishankar said, allows seamless opportunities but also allows narratives to be shaped, money to come in, and organisations to get about their agenda. "All this is done under the pretence of advocacy of open society of transparency, etc," he said.
Hitting out at Soros' comments, Jaishankar said, "If you do this kind of scaremongering...millions of people will be deprived of citizenship. It actually does real damage to the societal fabric because somebody out there believes you. You create that kind of fear psychosis."
Meanwhile, BJP lashed out over Soros' comments. Addressing a press conference in New Delhi, Union Minister of Women and Child Development Smriti Irani on Friday slammed Soros said that the man who broke the Bank of England and a man, who is designated as an economic war criminal, has now expressed his desire to break the Indian democracy. She added that Soros wants a government that is pliable to his needs for making his nefarious plans successful.
"It is evident from his statements that he has pronounced funding over one billion dollars to target leaders like PM Modi. This is significant," The Minister said during the conference.
She said, "Those who support Soros need to know that democracy has prevailed in India and continues to do so and as a party worker of the BJP, I can say that these designs to weaken Indian democracy will be met by the might of India under Prime Minister Narendra Modi."
Visit news.dtnext.in to explore our interactive epaper!
Download the DT Next app for more exciting features!
Click here for iOS
Click here for Android