India Thursday summoned New Zealand High Commissioner Rupert Holborow over comments by a TV anchor on Delhi Chief Minister Dikshit and said the "racist" remarks were "totally unacceptable" and should be "condemned by all right thinking people and nations".
The ministry of external affairs (MEA) issued a strong demarche to the New Zealand envoy. Holborow met Secretary (East) Lata Reddy.
Earlier this week, New Zealand TV anchor Paul Henry made offensive remarks on air about how Dikshit's name should be pronounced. He also made derogatory remarks about Indians.
In a strongly worded statement, the ministry hoped that New Zealand government would take immediate "demonstrative action" against the journalist.
"It was conveyed to him (New Zealand envoy) that the government strongly and unequivocally denounces the racist remarks of the journalist in question," the statement said.
"It is shocking that such bigoted views have been aired by representative of a mainstream media organisation of a multi-ethnic democracy like New Zealand," it added.
"These remarks are totally unacceptable to India and should be condemned by all right thinking people and nations," it added.
"It is hoped that the government of New Zealand would take immediate demonstrative action against the said individual to send out a clear signal that such behavior is totally unacceptable."
The statement said the envoy conveyed his "deep regret for the hurt caused by the comments of the media commentator which he characterised as culturally insensitive, inappropriate and vulgar and certainly not the views of the government of New Zealand."
The high commissioner also acknowledged the "vital contribution" of the chief minister to the Commonwealth Games.
MEA sources said that the Indian high commissioner in New Zealand had also "suitably taken up this matter with the New Zealand government".