Georgetown: India’s High Commissioner to Guyana, Mr. Venkatachalam Mahalingam on Thursday chastised Director of Public Information, Imran Khan, over a reckless and mischievous social media post.
Khan who has always managed to raise the ire of many officials for his poor comments on Facebook stated “something smells and it ain’t parfum”.
He questioned whether the Indian High Commission in Guyana was interfering in Guyana’s internal affairs and attempting to engage in destabilization of the Coalition Government.
His post was in connection with the 23 representatives from Guyana who attended Tuesday’s special conference for the People of Indian Origin Members of Parliament, held in India.
Guyana’s delegation was the largest and included 20 MPs, 17 from the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) and three from the coalition Government.
The PPP fielded just 12 members at Wednesday’s sitting of the National Assembly which was designated private members’ business day, designed to primarily address matters brought by the opposition.
“Were any of the Indo-Guyanese ministers of government and sitting Members of Parliament invited to the Persons of Indian Origin Members of Parliament Conference currently ongoing in India? Or did the High Commission only and deliberately invite three Coalition Government backbench parliamentarians while specifically ignoring ministers? If so, on what basis was this decision made?” Khan questioned in his post.
He also tagged the Indian High Commissioner in the post. There were more persons critical of his comment including Minister of Public Health Volda Lawrence who replied “This is distasteful and not in keeping with how this Government treats their guests.”
The Minister further in her comment urged Khan to remove the post.
According to the Indian Envoy, many in the top hierarchy of the Government and Guyana High Commission in New Delhi are aware of the invitations from Government of India for 23 MPs and 3 Mayors of Guyana and the rationale behind inviting only those Persons of Indian Origin MPs who are not Ministers.
The High Commissioner described Khan’s comments as reckless in addressing a serious issue on social media. He stated that comments were a clear intention to mislead the general public by none other than Director of Public Information.
“[It] is unfortunate, irresponsible, unprofessional and to say the least, mischievous, given the excellent bilateral relations being enjoyed by both India and Guyana and the ongoing friendly cooperation in various multilateral fora,” Mahalingam stated.