Ahead of the crucial meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President Barack Obama here next week,influential American lawmakers hoped that their talks would give a new thrust to bilateral ties and resolve the differences on trade and economic issues.
Two influential Congressmen also hoped the Singh-Obama meeting would also result in implementation of the civil nuclear deal,which is a landmark in the Indo-US relationship,and finalisation of agreement on export of shale gas to India,with which the US does not has a free trade agreement (FTA).
“I hope we finalize the arrangement on Land G. I hope we can make more progress on counter terrorism co-operation,especially the exchange of information between the United States and India so that we can better track those engaged in terror against our two countries,” Congressman Ed Royce,Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee,said.
“On trade and investment front,I think it is important that we move towards a more liberalised trade between India and the United States. We have little more work to do trying to expedite nuclear power for India for civilian purposes,” he said in response to a question on the next week’s visit of Prime Minister Singh to Washington.
Having high expectation from the Obama-Singh meeting,Congressman Joe Wilson said it is time to recognise the strategic partnership between the United States and India.
“The partnership becomes ever more important as terrorism keeps striking around the world. No country has had the level of attacks and deaths as India’s. We feel a real kinship,” he said.
“I have another interest too. I really want the civilian nuclear agreement to be promoted. I believe this is good for the people of India. To build a modern society you must have a safe and secure and reliable energy source. And I believe nuclear is. I am so hopeful that the agreement that we have be fully implemented for the benefit of the people of India and the United States,” Wilson said.
When asked about nomination of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as the prime ministerial candidate of the main opposition party,Royce said the US should not get involved in the party politics of other countries.
“We try in the United States not to get involved in party politics overseas. That is the position I have long taken. I have worked with the BJP. I have worked with the Congress.
“My policies overseas has been to meet with the representatives of both the parties. I have encouraged members here on the Democratic and Republican side let’s look at this from the stand point of trying to have a common working relationship with,” Royce said.