UK police paying close attention to attacks against Indians, says British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly
New Delhi, March 1: British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly on Wednesday said the United Kingdom police and security services were paying close attention to the attacks against Indians and assured that action against any illegal activity.
"We take the security of people very seriously, our police and security services always pay close regard to such activities and if it is an illegal activity, we act upon it," British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said while talking to ANI. He also made it clear to the Indians that the UK is a welcoming place for them.
'Pro-Khalistan groups' have time and again resorted to violent protests outside the High Commission of India in London. Recently, on February 18, anti-India slogans were raised outside Indian High Commission in London. Khalistani supporters not just raised Pro-Khalistani slogans but also chanted anti-India slogans outside the Indian High Commission.
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Criticizing the Pro-Khjalistani group, former president of Andhra Pradesh Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) Vishnu Vardhan Reddy tweeted, "KhaIistanis raising anti-India-Modi slogans outside Indian High Commission in London. They're still living in their fairyland they can benefit themselves with these sort of protests! They're doing harm to themselves only."
Anti-India sloganeering by Khalistani supporters in London comes days after a Hindu Temple was targeted in Canada by some Khalistani elements.
Meanwhile, in Delhi, in an interview with ANI, Cleverly said, "We want to see more connections with Indians and we want to strengthen the bilateral relations in the coming future."
He further said that India's G20 presidency was quite exciting, it has fantastic opportunities. This is a great opportunity to talk about sustainable economic agenda and green agenda.
Speaking on India-UK Free Trade Agreement (FTA), James Cleverly said that the UK does much business with India and is working extensively. He said that he would be meeting India's trade secretary to make sure this trade agreement really benefits both countries & unlocks billion of pounds of bilateral trade.
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British Foreign Secretary said that the issue of searches on BBC offices in India was raised with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar during a bilateral meeting on Wednesday.
Cleverly brought up the issue of the BBC tax searches during his meeting with Jaishankar, sources told ANI.
He was firmly told that all entities operating in India must comply fully with relevant laws and regulations," according to sources. In February this year, Income Tax authorites had conducted searches at the offices of the British broadcaster in New Delhi and Mumbai.
Speaking to ANI in an exclusive interview, Cleverly said BBC was an independent organisation and was separate from the UK Government.
"I didn't see the documentary but I've seen reactions in the UK and India. The BBC is an independent organisation and separate from government. I enjoy a strong personal relationship with Dr Jaishankar...relationship between UK-India growing stronger by the day," said Cleverly when asked about the BBC documentary on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Speaking on the UK PM Rishi Sunak's priorities in terms of India, he said he had launched the young professional scheme, whereby 3,000 young Indians could come to the UK, and vice-versa, to develop answers to the challenges of the future together. The living bridge, those connections are very well exemplified given the fact that the British PM is of Indian heritage.