NATIONAL

Attack on our ambitions: PM

Special Correspondent

“Non-state actors practising terrorism aided by state establishments”

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday asserted that India would not accept a situation where terrorism is used as an instrument to cripple its economy or the values it stood for.

“India sought peace and stability in its neighbourhood. The situation is, however, worrisome. Non-state actors were practising terrorism that is aided and abetted by state establishments. The Mumbai strikes are an attack on India’s ambitions to emerge as an economic power,” Dr. Singh told heads of Indian missions.

Threats such as terrorism and piracy required a well thought-out strategy, he said, according to the brief portions of his address released by the government.

Dr. Singh emphasised that India’s foreign policy should be an extension of national interests. He identified removal of poverty, disease and ignorance as the biggest problems facing the country.

Removal of poverty and emancipation of people should be given the pride of place in the foreign policy and diplomatic efforts should be geared to removing obstacles which stand in the way of achieving these objectives. Particular attention needed to be paid to ensuring food security, the management of water resources, energy security and overcoming technology denial regimes.

Globalisation

Now that globalisation “had come to stay” and interdependence among nations was a “fact of life,” the implication was that the destinies of nations were increasingly interlinked. India was a country not well endowed with natural resources on a per capita basis.

Therefore, it would have to emerge as one of the major trading nations of the world. Indian diplomacy should be geared to ensure an open and transparent multilateral trading system and to overcome barriers to trade, Dr. Singh said.

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