New Delhi couldn’t have hoped for a bigger compliment on Valentine’s Day than being wooed by two of Europe’s most bitter rivals — the French and the Brits — at the same time with Francois Hollande already in town and David Cameron set to follow suit next week in pursuit of a “very special relationship” with India.

Setting the music mood ahead of the visit, Mr. Cameron clarified that there was “no limit” on the number of Indian students who could come to Britain provided they had a place at a British university. Nor was there a limit on “the amount of people” who could stay and work after completing their studies.

Britain would be “incredibly welcoming” to Indian students who wanted to study here.

“There is no limit on the number of students who can come from India to study at British universities, no limit at all. All you need is a basic English qualification and a place at a British university. And what’s more, after you’ve left a British university, if you can get a graduate-level job there is no limit to the amount of people who can stay and work, or the time that they can stay at work,” Mr Cameron told the ethnic Sunrise TV.

There were 40,000 Indian students in Britain and it was “proud’’ of them.

Mr. Cameron’s remarks came as universities expressed concern over a 24 per cent decline in the number of Indian students coming to Britain since the introduction of stringent visa rules last year.

Mr. Cameron’s talks in New Delhi and Mumbai would focus on trade. He said both India and Britain were committed to doubling bilateral trade by 2015.