18 April, 2021

Sushma Swaraj, 62

External affairs minister 4.5/10

Sushma Swaraj, 62

The irony is apparent: in his first 200 days, Modi has gone to Brazil, Japan, USA, Australia, Nepal. In contrast, his external affairs minister has made more news for wanting to turn the Bhagawad Gita into the national scripture. In recent years, India’s foreign ministers have enjoyed a high profile and high visibility. But Sushma Swaraj, though one of the senior-most leaders in the government, has acted more like a face-less junior minister, allowing much of the policies to be formulated and articulated by the PMO.

Actually, the MEA is key to the Modi government’s development plank and promise to revive the economy since much of that can only happen once investment from outside starts coming in. And in this, the perception of India as an attractive investment destination and business-friendly market depends much on how the leadership manages to sell that image to the outside world. Modi has been extremely active on this score (engaging with India’s immediate neighbours in South Asia to dining with the world biggies at the high-table of international...

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