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UK Seeks India, Pakistan talks over Kashmir

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Prime Minister Theresa May at the British Academy, London

British Prime Minister Theresa May who arrived in Delhi on Sunday night said India and Pakistan should resume bilateral talks to settle the dispute over Kashmir….reports Anasudhin Azeez

Prime Minister Theresa May at the British Academy, London
Prime Minister Theresa May at the British Academy, London

Mrs May was talking to Asian Lite on board of Royal Airforce Voyager. “This is a matter of India and Pakistan to sort it out through dialogues,” May told Asian Lite regarding UK’s stance on cross border terrorism sponsored by Pakistan in Kashmir. “This is not an issue for any other government to get involve.”

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson sparked a controversy by issuing a statement mentioning India’s northern state as Indian-administered Kashmir. Despite the condemnation of US and UN, Britain is yet to clarify their stance on Kashmir.

Mrs May arrives in Delhi on a three official visit to promote Indo-UK relations.

“The relationships between our two countries are strong, and the Indian diaspora plays a vital role in our national life,” Mrs May said. “In my talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi I want to build on our relationship for the benefit of both our countries, generating jobs and wealth and maintaining cooperation on defence and security.”

Modi with British Prime Minister  Theresa May on the sidelines of G20 Summit 2016, in Hangzhou, China
Modi with British Prime Minister Theresa May on the sidelines of G20 Summit 2016, in Hangzhou, China

“The UK and India are natural partners – the world’s oldest democracy and the world’s largest democracy – and together I believe we can achieve great things – delivering jobs and skills, developing new technologies and improving our cities, tackling terrorism and climate change,” she added. “This is a partnership about our shared security and shared prosperity. It is a partnership of potential. And on this visit I intend to harness that potential, rebooting an age-old relationship in this age of opportunity and with that helping to build a better Britain.”

Along with Modi, the British prime minister will inaugurate the first Indo-UK tech summit at Taj Palace Hotel in New Delhi.  The British delegation includes prominent British indian business personalities like Lord Jitesh Gadhia, Dr Arnab Basu MBE, CEO of Kromek Group, Dr Nik Kotecha, Chief Executive Officer of Morningside Pharmaceuticals and Dr Gordon Sanghera, CEO of Oxford Nanopore Technologies.

The business agenda includes the signing of a landmark agreement to improve the intellectual property landscape in India with a programme of co-operation between the UK Intellectual Property Office and Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion. This will support Indian efforts to protect and enforce intellectual property rights, thereby addressing one of the concerns for British businesses operating in India.

The UK will also commit to extend assistance to India to improve the business environment, including by providing advice on reducing regulation, tax and public administration, standards and insolvency. No other country has such comprehensive co-operation with India in this area, which is intended to support Modi’s efforts to push India up the world’s Ease of Doing Business rankings from its current 130th spot and in turn make it easier for UK business to trade and invest in India.

Both Prime Ministers will also launch an India-UK Urban Partnership on smart cities and urban development which could be unlock new business worth up to £2 billion to British business over the next five years. The Indo-British collaboration is also expected to focus on the fast-growing and dynamic state of Madhya Pradesh besides the historic and holy city of Varanasi, Prime Minister Modi’s constituency in Uttar Pradesh.