Manmohan Singh travelled abroad more often than Modi: Amit Shah

Panaji: Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in the two and a half years in office, has travelled abroad on fewer occasions than his predecessor Manmohan Singh, BJP national president Amit Shah said on Saturday, and added that the former Prime Minister would muddle up his speeches when abroad.

Shah took potshots at Singh, referring to him as ‘mouni baba’ or ‘silent sage’ even as he said that India under Modi’s regime had a pride of place in the international arena.

“Kamal Nath has made a statement that Modi ji goes abroad very often. Kamal Nath does not know facts. In the two and a half year regimes of Manmohan Singh and Modi, Singh has gone abroad on more occasions than Modi. Kamal Nath does not know this, he cannot be blamed, because earlier our PM was a Mouni Baba, you know Mouni baba right?” Shah said to cheers from the Goa Bharatiya Janata Party poll booth workers.

Further mocking the former United Progressive Alliance government Prime Minister’s functioning, Shah said that Singh’s international visits were lacklustre and that the former Prime Minister used to muddle up his speeches.

“When he (Singh) used to go abroad, no one would know about it. No one, either in India or abroad, would know about his foreign visits. He would take two sheets of paper with English text on it. He would simply read out the content printed on the two pages and return to India. Sometimes, the sheets would get mixed up and he would read about Malaysia in Indonesia and about Indonesia in Malaysia,” Shah said.

The BJP national president said that Modi had been successful in altering the perception of India in the international arena in a mere two and a half years.

“Now when Narendra Modi became Prime Minister of India, whenever he travels abroad, be it Nepal, Bhutan, (Sri) Lanka, China, US, England, France thousands of people are ready to welcome him. Therefore everyone knows now when Modi travels,” Shah said.

“Narendra bhai has given India a pride of place internationally in two years. Mr. Kamal Nath, if you do not realise it, it does not matter. When the PM addresses the UN in Hindi, Indian hearts swell with pride,” Shah said.