At event on PM Modi, S Jaishankar says this on ‘Delhi media’: ‘Status of national leader...'

Published on Jul 05, 2022 02:20 PM IST

Since coming to power in 2014, the prime minister has become the template of what it means to be a ‘national leader’, the external affairs minister said.

S Jaishankar speaking at the event on Tuesday. (ANI)
S Jaishankar speaking at the event on Tuesday. (ANI)
By, New Delhi

Speaking about prime minister Narendra Modi, external affairs minister S Jaishankar on Tuesday remarked that before 2014, the ‘Delhi media’ used to bestow the status of ‘national leader’ on all its ‘friends and favourites,’

“A large part of the book is written by people outside the government. He's a PM who has captured sentiments and aspirations of the entire country. He has been approached from perspectives of sports, business, public life in this book,” Jaishankar, who was speaking at an event in New Delhi, said, according to news agency ANI.

The former foreign secretary was speaking at an event on the book ‘Modi@20: Dreams Meet Delivery’.

“What makes a leader? In India before Modi, this question puzzled serious students of politics. In 1947, national leaders were those whose names were recalled across regions and states,” the Rajya Sabha MP continued, quoting a line from the book.

Jaishankar then spoke about the ‘Delhi media’. The BJP leader said, “In the succeeding decades at the height of the coalition era, the expression national leader came to be much abused. It was a status distributed by the Delhi media to its friends and favorites. Since 2014, PM Modi is the template for what it means and takes to be a national leader.”

Though the minister did not clarify what he meant by ‘Delhi media’, the term is used colloquially to describe the Delhi-based news channels and publications, which, by virtue of functioning out of the national capital, are geographically close to the seat of political power. Over the years, news channels have been accused of favouring a political party or the party in power.

Meanwhile, the book, ‘Modi@20 Dreams Meet Delivery’, was launched by vice president M Venkaiah Naidu last month. As the name suggests, it is based on PM Modi completing 20 years as a head of government. He reached the milestone in October last year; from October 2001 to September 2013, Modi was the chief minister of Gujarat and, since May 2014, the prime minister of India.

Also Read | PM Narendra Modi completes 20 years in public office, events planned

Published by Rupa Publications, the book has chapters penned by intellectuals and eminent citizens. The authors include Sudha Murty, Nandan Nilekani, Amish Tripathi, and Sadhguru, among others.

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