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Tuesday, Nov 19, 2019

Dutch diplomat curses Delhi

Arnold Parzer terms Delhi 'a garbage dump' where 'people are a darn nuisance', writes, Nilova Roy. Is the diplomat justified? Share your views...

india Updated: Sep 22, 2006 03:49 IST
Nilova Roy Chaudhury
Nilova Roy Chaudhury

The Dutch cannot seem to stay away from the Indian spotlight even if it is for all the wrong reasons. Just weeks after they created turbulence by suspecting some fidgety garment exporters as terrorists, a Dutch diplomat touched the nether regions of diplomacy as he shot his mouth off on New Delhi – "a garbage dump" where "people are a darn nuisance".

Arnold Parzer, the most senior diplomat after the ambassador and his deputy at the Royal Netherlands Embassy in New Delhi, recently told Dutch newspaper Het Financieele Dagblad about the Capital: "Anything that can go wrong, does go wrong; everyone interferes with everyone else; the people are a darn nuisance; the climate is hell; the city a garbage dump." He also said, "New Delhi is the most miserable place I have ever lived in."

Parzer, 63, who has been the counsellor for agriculture for the past three years, is reportedly in the doghouse for his comments. Shashi U Tripathi, secretary (West) in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), said the remarks were "in bad taste". Another official said, "You do not trash your host country in the press."

After the interview appeared on September 9, the Indian embassy in The Hague sent its translated copy to the MEA, seeking redress. When the joint secretary (Europe-West) summoned Dutch Ambassador Eric Niehe to the South Block, the latter said he had "taken the officer to task".

Hans Schutte, a spokesman for the Dutch Embassy, told HT on Thursday, "The statements in question do not in any way reflect the opinion of the Netherlands government."

Since Parzer completes his tenure next month, the MEA has decided not to issue a démarche.