12:16 pm - Sunday January 20, 2019

Respect Manmohan Singh’s decision on Commonwealth meet: Cameron

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Respect Manmohan Singh's decision on Commonwealth meet: Cameron
Respect Manmohan Singh's decision on Commonwealth meet: Cameron

New Delhi – British Prime Minister David Cameron Thursday said he respected Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s decision of not attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meet (CHOGM) in Sri Lanka and said both countries shared with Canada the “same approach” towards Colombo.

“I totally respect the decision of India,” Cameron told CNNIBN news channel.

The Indian prime minister last week decided not to attend the CHOGM meet being held in Sri Lanka after opposition from Tamil Nadu parties and even members of his c! abinet from the southern state.

“India, Canada and Britain, we all have the same approach towards Sri Lanka. My own view about attending is it’s a Commonwealth conference, I believe in helping to lead the organisations,” said Cameron.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper also decided not to go to Colombo.

Talking about bilateral ties between the two countries, Cameron said, “Britain and India should be partners of choice; we both want to fight terrorism. The future really excites me about what Britain and India can do together.”

“I think in a good relationship between countries, you shouldn’t have to have enormous state visits with vast delegations, in good relations you should be able to drop in, catch up, pick up on a few ideas and have some informal conversations which I will be doing with Mr Manmohan Singh,” he said.

On the visa bond issue, Cameron said, “There is no limit on the number of Indian students that can come to Britain an! d study and having completed your university degree there is no limit o! n the number of people who can do a job in Britain.”

“I think people will understand that a country like Britain, much smaller geographically than India, we have to control immigration,”he said.

The trade relationship is good between India and Britain is good,he said.

“Britain is really top 3 investor into India. British companies are making the biggest investments and if you look at India investments into Britain more is going into Britain than it is going into the rest of the European Union combined, so trade is at the heart of it,” he said.

On Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar’s last test match, Cameron said, “I have a picture of his at the UK stadium, I hope he likes that as a gift.”

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