As China has stepped up investment in several projects in India’s neighbourhood, the Government on Thursday said it is aware of China funding infrastructure projects including in ports, highways and airports in countries in South Asia.
Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan said India is committed to developing friendly and mutually beneficial relations with all its neighbours under its ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy.
He was replying to a question in Rajya Sabha.
Muraleedharan said the Government keeps a constant watch on all developments having a bearing on India’s security and takes all necessary measures to safeguard it.
“The government is aware that China is engaging in funding of infrastructure projects in countries in South Asia, including in ports, highways, railways and airports,” Muraleedharan said. He said India is an active economic partner of its neighbours and is involved in a large number of development projects in these countries.
“India also has extensive ties with its neighbours in diverse fields including defence and security cooperation, trade and investment, education, culture and people-to-people exchanges,” he said.
To a separate question, Muraleedharan said there have been instances of attacks on Indian nationals and persons of Indian origins (PIOs) in the US, the UK and Canada in the last few years and some of these attacks appeared to be racially motivated. “According to media reports and inputs, there have been instances of attacks on Indian nationals and PIOs in the USA, UK and Canada in the last few years. Some of these attacks appear to be racially motivated,” he said.
Muraleedharan said the safety and well-being of Indian nationals in foreign countries is the top priority for the government.
“Indian missions/consulates in USA, UK and Canada are constantly engaged with the local governments and the Indian community, including on measures to ensure their safety and well-being,” he said.