New Delhi: In a sensational claim, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) revealed that Congress President Rahul Gandhi had sought a ceremonial send-off from the Chinese ambassador to India while he was departing for China via Nepal.
“Rahul Gandhi will go to Nepal and then China”, BJP Spokesperson Sambit Patra said, adding, “He wanted the Chinese ambassador to see him off. The Chinese ambassador wrote to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) asking for three passes to use the airport lounge so that a ceremonial send-off could be given to see off Rahul Gandhi.”
In response to this application, the government of India didn’t respond, the BJP spokesperson revealed, addressing the Congress president directly and saying: “You are Rahul Gandhi, not Chinese Gandhi. Why should the Chinese ambassador come see you off? There is no such protocol”.
“Why such a demand from the Chinese envoy?”, Patra asked, seeking an answer from the Congress party.
“Three permanent passes are with every envoy. Did they use it? Why did the Chinese ambassador want to see off a non-Chinese resident? Why see off an Indian resident?” he added.
Continuing on this line of questioning, he provided a background of the Gandhi family allegedly having a ‘relationship with China’: “What’s the Chinese connection? You are Rahul Gandhi, not Chinese Gandhi. There is a history also. Isn’t it true that in 2008, during the Beijing Olympics, the whole Gandhi family was invited. They arrived in China for the opening ceremony. Sonia Gandhi was seated in an enclosure reserved for guests of the Chinese premier. When she attended and was coming back, the Chinese ambassador went to see them off though they didn’t hold any posts. What’s this relationship?”
The news briefing had begun with a declaration that Rahul Gandhi has left for China, with Sambit Patra claiming that ‘Rahul Gandhi loves China’ and backing up his claim by showcasing a video of Rahul Gandhi’s remarks about China, especially vis-a-vis India, made during his recent Europe trip, and also a photo that had surfaced earlier of Rahul Gandhi, his sister Priyanka Gandhi-Vadra and her husband Robert Vadra, meeting Chinese dignitaries.