M A I N   N E W S

India a responsible N-nation: Kalam
Calls for closer ties with Russia, China
Sumir Kaul

President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam interacts with the Indian community at a reception hosted in his honour in Moscow on Sunday evening.
President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam interacts with the Indian community at a reception hosted in his honour in Moscow on Sunday evening. — PTI photo

Moscow, May 23
Asserting that India is a responsible nation, President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam today said it would never be a proliferator of weapons of mass destruction.

“When we are surrounded by nuclear armed countries, we did not have any other alternative but to become a nuclear weapon state,” he told senior members of Duma, Russian Parliament, including its Speaker, here.

Though India has not signed the Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT), it is a non-proliferator of weapons of mass destruction and a very responsible nation, said the President, who is on a four-day visit to Russia, the first by an Indian President since the collapse of the former Soviet Union.

Kalam said the recent Weapons of Mass Destruction and Their Delivery System (Prohibition of Unlawful Activities) Bill-2005, mooted by the UPA government, emphatically confirms that India would never be a proliferator.

The developed world has realised how responsible India is on international issues, he said adding “all nations want India to be their friend.”

On India’s relations with its neighbouring countries, Kalam said recently he and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had met Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf. “The people have started moving between the two countries and the train journey will also start between the two countries”.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao had also visited India recently and “we had very good discussions. Both countries have evolved guidelines for mutual progress. Definitely peace prevails in our borders”, he said.

Speaking on Indo-Russian partnership, the President termed the Brahmos supersonic missile as the result of convergence of two great minds.

President Kalam also called for a closer cooperation between India, Russia and China, even as the foreign ministers of the three countries are scheduled to hold their first-ever ‘’stand-alone’’ trilateral meeting in Vladivostok on June 2, according to UNI.

“Stronger relations between India, Russia and China would promote international prosperity,” the President said, in his address to the scholars at the Moscow Oriental Institute.

Noting that about half of the world’s population lives in the three countries, he said their intensive cooperation in the economic sphere had “big prospects.” — PTI


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