Johannesburg (PTI): Congress has objected to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's remarks in Shanghai negating the past achievements of the country and belittling his predecessors.
No Prime Minister of India has ever lowered the dignity of the office of Prime Minister on foreign soil, senior Congress Leader and Deputy Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Anand Sharma said in Johannesburg.
"We had cautioned him and BJP earlier not to repeat such unacceptable statements which he made in Germany and Canada during his last foreign visit.
"His statements confirm a loss of balance which highly embarrasses India nation. He has repeatedly broken the established traditions and travelled not only as India's Prime Minister but as a BJP leader. He has embarrassed the country...," Sharma said.
He was speaking at the Annual Mapungubwe Lecture, jointly hosted by Mapungubwe Institute for Strategic Reflection and University of Johannesburg, on the theme 'Indian National Congress and ANC – Shared Experiences as Freedom Movements and the Challenges of Governing Pluralistic Democracies'.
In his address to Indian diaspora in Shanghai, Modi broke his silence on opposition criticism over his frequent foreign visits and took veiled digs at his critics back home, saying he was being attacked for "tireless" work and asserted that if it was a "crime" he would continue to do it.
During his visit, Sharma also met South African President Jacob Juma and discussed economic and strategic partnership between India and South Africa and the recent political developments.
Sharma shared his assessment of the causes that led to the UPA's electoral defeat and subsequent developments in India under the present dispensation.
Sharma said President Zuma has invited Congress President and the leadership of the Congress Party to visit South Africa, the National Governing Council of ANC for an interaction.