South Korea regrets Hyundai Pak's offensive post as India erupts
Deccan Chronicle.| dc correspondent
India on Tuesday said it had summoned the South Korean ambassador and conveyed to him New Delhi's displeasure on the Hyundai post
New Delhi sought appropriate action by Hyundai and said there would be no compromise on the matter as it involved the territorial integrity of India. (Image credit: Twitter)
New Delhi: With a furious New Delhi taking serious note, South Korea on Tuesday expressed "regret" for the offence caused to India by a provocative social media post put out on Monday by Hyundai Pakistan (the South Korean automobile giant’s Pakistan-based wing) on Pakistan’s "Kashmir Day" that was subsequently deleted. India on Tuesday said it had summoned the South Korean ambassador the same day (Monday) and conveyed to him New Delhi’s displeasure on the Hyundai post put out from Pakistan.
South Korean foreign minister Chung Eui-yong called external affairs minister S. Jaishankar on Tuesday and "regretted the offence caused to the people and Government of India by the social media post".
The controversy continued to rage across the social media Tuesday after two America-based global fast-food chains also found themselves in the same controversy after other provocative Kashmir-related social media posts reportedly put out by their outlets in Pakistan, with one of them later apologising in India while the other clarified it does not support such posts. Both these controversial posts put out from Pakistan were also reportedly deleted.
According to reports, the Pakistan-based wings of some other foreign companies also put up such controversial posts in what may have been a carefully-planned move by Islamabad to create a furore in India to focus global attention on the Kashmir issue.
In Hyundai’s case, New Delhi sought "appropriate action" by Hyundai and said there would be "no compromise" on the matter as it involved the territorial integrity of India, with the Indian ambassador in Seoul also demanding an explanation from the Hyundai headquarters there. Welcoming foreign investment by all companies, New Delhi demanded that "such companies or their affiliates refrain from false and misleading comments on matters of sovereignty and territorial integrity". India also noted that "a statement was issued by Hyundai Motors conveying its deep regret to the people of India and making it clear that it does not comment on political or religious issues".
Pakistan observes what it calls "Kashmir Day" every year on February 5 to highlight its claims on Jammu and Kashmir and express support for the "Kashmir cause". On Monday, Hyundai Pakistan’s official Twitter handle put out the message: "Let us remember the sacrifices of our Kashmiri brothers and stand in support as they continue to struggle for freedom". The post had a picture of Kashmir’s iconic Dal Lake with a houseboat on it and a barbed wire drawn across.
In a statement on the Hyundai episode, MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said: "We had seen a social media post on the so-called Kashmir Solidarity Day was made by Hyundai Pakistan. Immediately after this social media post on Sunday, 6th February 2022, our ambassador in Seoul contacted the Hyundai headquarters and sought an explanation. The offending post had been removed subsequently. The ambassador of the Republic of Korea (South Korea) was summoned by the ministry of external affairs yesterday 7th February 2022. The strong displeasure of the government on the unacceptable social media post by Hyundai Pakistan was conveyed to him. It was highlighted that this matter concerned India’s territorial integrity on which there could be no compromise. We expected the company to take appropriate action to properly address these issues."