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New Delhi, Dec.13 (ANI): What if Arundhati Roy was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for err "championing the cause of oppressed minorities in India, particularly Kashmiris and Maoists”?
 
This pithy article by Rupa Subramanya in The Wall Street Journal  http://on.wsj.com/hT4Geb should really set us thinking. Does it?
 
Rupa writes in the hypothetical, but not implausible event, that if Ms. Roy gets “that” phone call from Oslo, what will be the reaction in India? How would you react? Would you take it as a symbol of the triumph of our democracy or a black mark on Indian national identity? Would you feel proud or outraged?  Really, how would the Government of India react?

Onboard Special Aircraft, Dec.12 (ANI): Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh's visit to Germany and Belgium was successful since several high level exchanges took place with leaders of both countries, said Secretary (West) in the Ministry of External Affairs, Vivek Katju.
 
Interacting with mediapersons onboard Air India One while returning to New Delhi, Katju said: "Prime Minister met the Prime Minister of Belgium (Yves Leterme) yesterday evening. His meeting was in the context of high-level exchanges that have been taking place between the two countries over the past few years."

New Delhi, Dec.12 (ANI): The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, returned to New Delhi on Sunday after completing a three-day visit to Brussels and Berlin.
 
During his visit to the German capital Berlin, Dr. Singh held talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on issues such as counter-terrorism ties and UN reforms and how to take the next steps in improving the bilateral ties and strategic partnership between the two countries.
 
The highlight of the visit to Berlin was Chancellor Merkel issuing a stern message to Pakistan that terrorism is not a means to solve political problems and was "unacceptable" to Germany and the rest of the international community. 

Brussels, Dec 11 (ANI): India's Commerce Secretary Rahul Khullar on Friday said that end game negotiations relating to the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the European Union and New Delhi could be expected to be the most difficult.
 
When asked whether the negotiations were 50 percent complete, or still in the 25 percent range, Khullar said: "Remember a deal is not done until it is all done. So, on that criterion, nothing is done. I think more than half of it is actually being completed. What are you doing is you are entering into what are called last mile or end game negotiations. What happens in end game negotiations is typically all the very very difficult stuff is left right to the end."

Berlin, Dec 11 (ANI): Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh said today he would break his silence on the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) issue "at a suitable time".
 
Speaking onboard the special aircraft, he said that the existing institutional mechanisms can take care of what the JPC can do and expressed the hope that opposition will see reason.
 
Dr. Singh said that he was very sad that the Parliament was  not allowed to function.
 
Asked what if this impasse continued into the budget session, he said: " I am worried about the future of the parliamentary system...I hope reason will prevail."

Berlin, Dec.11 (ANI): German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Saturday, in no uncertain terms, castigated Pakistan for using terror to propagate its political ends.

 
At a joint press interaction organized here with visiting Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, Merkel said: "Pakistan must realize that terror is not a means to an end, and, it should not use terror to solve its political problems."
 
She further said that Germany would extend its fullest cooperation to India in battling terrorism.

Berlin, Dec.11 (ANI): Describing Germany as the economic powerhouse of Europe, and as India's largest trading partner in Europe, visiting Indian Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, said that it is playing a key role in ensuring financial stability and economic recovery in the Eurozone.
 
Conveying India's full support to German Chancellor Angela Merkel in this endeavour through an opening statement made at a joint press interaction here, Dr. Singh said that the economic resurgence of Europe is critical for a balanced recovery of the global economy. 
 
"We have agreed to continue our close consultations within the G-20 framework to work towards such an outcome," he said.

Berlin, Dec.11 (ANI): Visiting Indian Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, on Saturday, praised Germany for supporting the opening of international commerce for India in the field of civil nuclear energy, adding that both sides have discussed the possibilities of entering into bilateral cooperation in civil nuclear energy. 
 
"We deeply value Germany's consistent support, including in the Nuclear Suppliers Group," said Singh in an opening statement issued during a joint press interaction here.
 
He also said that German excellence in the manufacturing and infrastructure sectors is well known, and welcomed the steady growth of German investments in India. 

Berlin, Dec.11 (ANI): Germany will organize a Year of Germany in India beginning September 2011 to mark the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries, said visiting Indian Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, on Saturday.
 
India will organize the Days of India in Germany during 2012-13.  I have invited Chancellor Merkel to visit India next year, and I look forward to hosting her in Delhi, Dr. Singh added while delivering his opening statement at a joint press interaction here.
 
He further said: "Relations between our two countries are based on the strong foundations of shared values of freedom, democracy and respect for fundamental rights. Our strategic partnership has evolved tremendously in recent years. I look forward to working with Chancellor Merkel to further strengthen and deepen this partnership."

Berlin, Dec 11 (ANI): German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Saturday said there was no trust deficit between Germany and India on the issue of high technology transfer.
 
Responding to a question from this reporter during a joint press interaction with visiting Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, on why Germany puts restrictions on the transfer of high technology to India, Merkel said both sides were working on modalities to ease such restrictions.
 
Merkel said: "On the transfer of high technology for peaceful purposes, the Indian Prime Minister mentioned the potential for high technology trade between India and Germany. We are cooperating closely on this, and will work towards a smoother cooperation."

Berlin, Dec 11 (ANI): The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, will leave for New Delhi from here on Saturday after concluding his two-nation European tour of Belgium and Germany.
 
During his visit to the German capital, Dr Singh held talks with German leaders on counter-terrorism ties and UN reforms.
 
The Prime Minister also addressed a joint press conference along with German
Chancellor Angela Merkel, and praised Germany for supporting the opening of international commerce for India in the field of civil nuclear energy, adding that both sides have discussed the possibilities of entering into bilateral cooperation in civil nuclear energy.

Brussels, Dec. 10 (ANI): India and Europe should take the lead in avoiding protectionist trends, the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, said during a joint media interaction with the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, and the President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, here on Friday after the 11th India-EU Summit.
 
Dr. Singh said it would be beneficial for both India and European Union to keep their respective markets open and encourage the free flow and movement of people.
 
“I conveyed to the European leadership the vast opportunities that exist for European investment in India in the areas of infrastructure, high technology, research and development, clean energy and innovation. We are particularly keen to benefit from Europe’s experience in the area of skill development, vocational training and small and medium enterprises,” Singh said.

Brussels, Dec.10 (ANI): India and the European Union are close to signing a broad-based trade and investment agreement, visiting Indian Prime Minister, Dr. manmohan Singh, said here on Friday during a joint media interaction with the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, and the President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso.
 
"Our two sides have done commendable work in negotiations of an India-EU broad-based trade and investment agreement. We are at the last stages of this complex exercise. We have directed our officials to redouble their efforts to reach a conclusion by the spring of 2011. Finalisation of a balanced agreement will bring enormous benefits to both sides," Dr. Singh said.




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I am the Editor News, at Asian News International (ANI), Indias leading Multimedia News Agency and the India Correspondent for Channel News Asia, a Singapore based broadcaster.
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