WikiLeaks Cables from American envoy show he wanted to woo Modi unofficially after US denied him a visa!
Narendra Modi and the BJP today made the most of the latest diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks, saying these showed that the Gujarat Chief Minister was "incorruptible" — in fact, "the lone honest Indian politician".
Dated November 2, 2006, the cable sent by Michael S Owen, the Consul General in Mumbai, refers to Modi's growing potential as a national leader of his party and the need to engage with him to "directly" deliver a message on human rights.
In an appraisal of the CM, Owen adds: "Modi has successfully branded himself as a non-corrupt, effective administrator, as a facilitator of business in a state with a deep commercial culture, and as a no-nonsense, law-and-order politician who looks after the interests of the Hindu majority."
After a lecture at Pandit Deen Dayal Univerisity at Gandhinagar on Tuesday, Modi said the cable acknowledges him as "incorruptible" and refers to Gujarat as "a progressive state". "There are many non-corrupt people, but they have termed me incorruptible, which is good for the people of Gujarat. WikiLeaks shows two faces — that of the government of India and another of progressive Gujarat."
In a press release, the BJP said the US documents only assert and prove that Modi is the lone politician in India to be honest, fearless and clean. Said BJP national vice-president Purushottam Rupala and state party spokesperson I K Jadeja: "The government which has denied Modi as Modi now finds him as one with strong political willpower, an able administrator as well as the only non-corrupt, no-nonsense politician of India."
The BJP rubbed in the fact that the same US government had denied Modi a visa after the 2002 riots, and said America seemed to be "in a mood to repent".
In the cable, Owen comments on the denial of the visa, saying: "We believe that Modi's rise in the BJP seems likely. In coordination with Embassy New Delhi, we intend to continue our policy of interaction with the Chief Minister, whose B1/B2 visa we revoked in 2005. Such interaction allows us to deliver a clear message on human rights and religious freedom directly to the source. It will also shield us from accusations of opportunism from the BJP that would invariably arise if we ignored Modi now but sought a dialogue with him in the likely event that he makes it to the national stage."
While delighting in Owen's praise, Modi reacted to this part of the cable too, saying he needed "no lesson" on human rights from the US.
The CM claimed that at a meeting with Owen in 2006, he had "looked into Owen's eyes and said America should not give us advice on human rights. I am a son of India and I know what human rights violations you have done."