EAM Says Russia's Asia Tilt Helps India; Slams Khalistan

New Delhi: Ahead of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit, being held here virtually on Tuesday, external affairs minister S. Jaishankar underscored the importance of India's ties with Russia. He shed light on Russia’s strategic pivot towards Asia subsequent to the Ukraine conflict, where it severed its primary economic partnership with Western countries, most notably Europe.

Jaishankar mentioned that because of the conflict in Ukraine, Russia’s economic ties with Western countries were cut off. As a result, Russia has started to pay more attention to Asia. He pointed out that India’s trade with Russia has reached US $40 billion last year compared to $12-14 billion before the conflict.

Jaishankar also highlighted the growing partnership between Asian economies, with China being the largest among them. He suggested that India shouldn’t worry too much about Russia’s relationships with other countries, but instead, focus on strengthening its own ties with Russia and prioritising the interests of Indians.

Further, while visiting the Delhi North-west parliamentary constituency as part of the BJP’s Vikas Teerth yatra, Jaishankar discussed the matter of pro-Khalistan groups and their actions in specific Western countries. He expressed worry about a recent pro-Khalistan rally in Canada showcasing a picture of Talwinder Parmar, who was accused of the 1985 Air India airplane bombing, with an intention to honour him.

Jaishankar told reporters that India has raised the issue of pro-Khalistan posters with the respective governments of partner countries, including Canada, the US, the UK and Australia. He stressed that the radical and extremist thinking of Khalistani groups is detrimental not only to India but also to these Western nations and their relations. He urged these countries not to provide a platform for such elements and to address the matter promptly.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle with agency inputs )
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