Party president Rahul Gandhi, in his speech at the Congress plenary session, underlined the growing Chinese presence in India’s neighbourhood and made a specific mention of the Doklam plateau near Bhutan where China has built military infrastructure.
“China is present everywhere. China is in Doklam, in Nepal, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Myanmar,” said Mr. Gandhi, highlighting the growing expansion of the Chinese sphere in the Asia-Pacific,, and called for a third alternative apart from the American and the Chinese models in the global order.
Mr. Gandhi’s comments came at the end of the two-day plenary. The party released a document on the state of the country’s foreign affairs, and said the current government had moved away from the fundamental principles of the Indian foreign policy.
“The PM has pursued a personalised foreign policy. The foreign policy engagements and the PM’s visits abroad, have been reduced to being purely transactional. The Prime Minister’s tendency to disparage his predecessors and diminish India’s achievements since Independence, has undercut India’s own credibility abroad,” the foreign policy resolution said.
The plenary was attended by strong contingents from abroad. The Awami League of Bangladesh, African National Congress (ANC) of South Africa, and the UNP of Sri Lanka sent significant delegations. The Nepali Congress, which was defeated in last year’s general election, was represented by a large delegation led by former envoy of Kathmandu to Delhi, Deep Kumar Upadhyay. The Chinese Communist Party sent a member delegate. (Colombo Gazette)