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CMs' foreign jaunts

CMs foreign jaunts
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CMs\' Foreign Jaunts. Two prominent personalities of our country are currently on foreign tours. One is Prime Minister Modi and the other is Chief Minister of AP N Chandrababu Naidu.

Two prominent personalities of our country are currently on foreign tours. One is Prime Minister Modi and the other is Chief Minister of AP N Chandrababu Naidu. While it is common for Prime Ministers to take up foreign tours to promote international relations, it is rather rare for State Chief Ministers to go out and project their respective States.

The PM is aided by external affairs ministry and a band of diplomats, as it is a highly sensitive area where every word and gesture means a lot. A wrong note can spell grave consequences for the entire country. Chief Minister Naidu’s frequent foreign sojourns are to be viewed against this backdrop. Presently he is on tour to China, ostensibly to woo investors for projects in AP. He is accompanied by two or three ministers who have no experience in foreign affairs.

They may not be meting any national heads but they are making promises left and right. Who takes responsibility for these assurances? Is it the Union Government or the State government? Our past experience with China is replete with many problems. Even now there are tensions on boarder issues. Naidu is reported to have told the Chinese business representatives that they should consider Amaravati, the proposed capital of AP, as their second home. Such unwarranted bonhomie may send wrong signals.

The following points are worth pondering. Should the Chief Ministers be allowed to go to foreign nations on their own? Who will be responsible for their statements abroad? What is the role of external affairs ministry and commerce and industry ministries? If every State chooses to go abroad with their plans and proposals, would it not undermine the Centre?

If it remains unchecked, it could lead to serious consequences with each State going its way, oblivious to the Centre. Displaying the attitude of the proverbial camel, the AP Chief Minister wanted to go to Singapore to pay official condolences on the death of its former Prime Minister. The move didn’t materialise because the proposal was turned down by the PMO in time.

Vinay Bhushan B

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