Congress president Rahul Gandhi today accused the NDA government of creating a “problem” in India’s foreign policy and said the country stood “isolated” in the region. Underlining China’s expanding influence, Gandhi said the most important part of a country’s foreign policy was having a “good relationship” with others. “Today India is actually isolated in the region,” he told professionals and business people here during an interaction on the last day of his four-day ‘Janashirvad Yatra’ in the northern region of poll-bound Karnataka. India should work for creating as many jobs as there are in China, he said, adding that New Delhi must find a peaceful and not aggressive way to counter Beijing. “We have to find a way, not an aggressive way, not a military way, but a peaceful way to compete with the Chinese,” he said.
Gandhi referred to the “massive expansion” of Chinese presence in the region. “You see the Chinese have a presence in Nepal, they have a presence in Pakistan, in Sri Lanka, in Maldives… They have a presence in Burma (Myanmar),” Gandhi added. He said the NDA government had created a “problem” in India’s foreign policy. India’s “old friend Russia” was now “cosying up to our neighbours on the western side”, he said, adding, “This is actually a serious problem which is not getting discussed.” Hitting out at the Union government on employment generation, Gandhi claimed that while China was creating 50,000 jobs in 24 hours, the NDA government was generating 450 jobs in 24 hours.
“The simple thing is, there is only one measure, not two: how many jobs is India creating and how many jobs is China creating. I’m sad to say that over the last four years it (job creation) has become a really serious problem,” he added. On economic growth, he said India was “doing okay, (but) it was doing much better before”. The issue of jobs, he said, was not being publicly discussed. “When it comes to jobs, India is failing completely and this is not something that is publicly in the discourse at all,” he added.
Gandhi, however, conceded that to an extent even during the Congress-led UPA rule, “we were nowhere near the number of jobs that needed to be created”. He also spoke about the “massive increase” in the defence budgets of the U.S., China and Russia, and said, “We are now entering a new phase in world politics where you are going to see increased tension between U.S., China and Russians.” “In this situation, India has to have a clear understanding of the path going forward,” he said.