M A I N   N E W S

PM cautions Bush on terrorism as state policy
Rajeev Sharma
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 4
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam today wrote separate letters to US President George Bush, congratulating him on his re-election.

The most significant point the Prime Minister made in his two-page letter was that New Delhi and Washington should ensure that terrorism or religious extremism are not tolerated as instrument of state policy — a remark which diplomatic observers here see as a political innuendo referring to Pakistan without a reference to that country.

“One major goal of our policies must be to continue to deny any comfort or encouragement to religious extremism or terrorism, and resolve to ensure their complete elimination as an acceptable instrument of state policy. We are confident that the USA and India are on the same side in this effort,” Dr Manmohan Singh said.

“As partners against terrorism and WMD proliferation, we will stand by the USA in strengthening international peace and stability,” the Prime Minister pointed out in this context.

The Prime Minister used this opportunity to tell Mr Bush that a visit by him to India would be “a milestone in our relations”.

He stressed on the need for more intense engagement of the two democracies in the strategic field. “We must embark on a larger and a more ambitious agenda for broader strategic cooperation, high technology, commerce and defence hold a particular promise in this regard. We look forward to moving ahead expeditiously through the Next Steps in Strategic Partnership (NSSP)... I hope that we will have an opportunity to welcome you in India very soon.”

The Prime Minister recalled his discussion with Mr Bush in New York in September which focussed on the overriding priority of making the future more secure. In this context, he offered India’s unstinted support to the global war against terrorism and efforts to combat WMD proliferation.

President Kalam, in his message said: “I convey my warm congratulations on your re-election as the President of the USA. During your first term, relations between our two countries expanded significantly across a broad agenda. A growing warmth between our people has added to a steady convergence of interests. Initiatives taken by your Administration, including in high technology, have a strong resonance in my country. On behalf of the government and people of India, I express my best wishes for further successes in your second term. We are confident that under your strong leadership, our ties would continue to gain in substance and dynamism.”

HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |