Vice President Hamid Ansari asserted that the Indian government wants peace with China and his visit should be seen as the beginning of a wider engagement between the two nations.
Ansari, who is on a five-day trip to China – his first visit to this country, addressed a small gathering of Indians here and praised them for creating a world in which India’s profile is continuously rising.
He pointed that 40,000 Indians are currently living in China, 10,000 Indian students are pursuing their studies and 50 firms have set up businesses in this country. It is the beginning of a wider engagement between two countries that India looks forward to, Ansari stressed. He further said, “It is a well accepted fact that one can choose friends, but one cannot choose neighbour.”
The Vice President said, the Indian government looks forward for wider peace and co-operation with Chinese people, and “Whatever I have learnt and read about, I think this sentiment is reciprocated among the people and government of China.”
Stressing the importance of good relations between the two countries, Ansari said, “We have civilization linkages. We are not strangers to each others.” The Rajya Sabha Chairman said: “We are looking for ways from both the sides to further our engagements in all fields in which we discover a commonality of interests whether it is education, whether it is business, whether it is science and technology.”
Kiran Bedi tried to establish her credentials as a secular, pro-women candidate.