US senators vow to strengthen India-US ties
Top American senators have vowed to strengthen India-US strategic and trade relationships, saying the ties between the two countries have become strong dramatically in a "very dangerous and ever-changing world." At a reception hosted for the new Indian Ambassador to the US, Arun K Singh, senators John Cornyn (Republican) and Mark Warner (Democrat) said the two democracies share common values and ideals and it is time that they make the best use of it in the convergence of strategic and economic field. Cornyn and Warner are co-Chairs of the Senate India Caucus -- the only country-specific caucus in the US Senate. It was founded in 2004 by Senator John Cornyn and the then New York senator and ex-secretary of state Hillary Clinton. "Twenty five years ago, India and the US did not had the same short of relationship that we have today," Cornyn said adding that "in a very dangerous and ever-changing world, the bonds of common values have strengthened over time." The trading relationship between our two countries is very important, he said. "Our relationship 25 years ago was challenging. And now from the strategic stand point, FDI standpoint, trade between our two nations is strong dramatically, ties are extraordinarily strong," Warner said before a select audience at the Capitol Hill. Indian-American Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Nisha Desai Biswal said the past year has been a momentous year for India-US relationship, with the leaders of the two countries personally investing their time and energy. "All the makings of an ever more ambitious and important and consequential partnership are in place and now the rest is up to us," Biswal said. Ambassador Singh emphasised the need to focus on economic dimensions of the bilateral relationship. "We find tremendous convergence of our security and strategic needs across the globe. Going ahead, we need to focus on the economic dimension of our relationship," he said, referring to the goal, of increasing the annual bilateral trade to $500 billion from the current $100 billion. "Looking to the future, India sees itself very much as an innovation economy and clearly with that there would be a lot of scope of partnership between us," Singh said. Among others who attended the reception included the Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Thad Cochran.
July 24, 2015 | 2:38 pm IST.