Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

Indian MPs hold talk with EU leaders

Hindustan Times - 7 July 2005

A five-member parliamentary delegation from India led by the Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha, K. Rahman Khan, had a very successful three-day visit to the European Parliament (EP) in Strasbourg.

The Indian parliamentarians discussed the entire gambit of EU-India relations including the EU-India Strategic Partnership during the meetings with the EP Delegation for the Relations with the countries of South Asia and the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) which is chaired by Neena Gill, a British Member of the EP of Indian origin.

The Strasbourg meeting was the 12th EU-India parliamentary meeting where economic, trade, environment, telecommunication, political issues were discussed.

The EP side updated the Indian parliamentarians on the recent developments in the 25-member bloc, while the Indian side briefed the Euro-deputies about developments in India.

The Indian delegation raised the issue of the ban of religious symbols in France, in particular the ban on the Sikh turban. EU-India relations were also discussed in the meeting between the Indian parliamentary delegation and EP President Josep Borrell.

The Indian MPs also held a meeting with the Friends of India Group, which is led by British Member of EP Charles Tannock.

The Indian parliamentarians also held talks with the leadership of the three largest groups in the EP, EPP-ED (European People's Party and European Democrats), PSE (socialist group) and ALDE (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe).

The Indian delegation included Ashok Argal, Lok Sabha, M. Sreenivasulu Reddy, Lok Sabha, Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Lok Sabha and Fali S.Nariman, Rajya Sabha.

The Indian ambassador to the EU, Belgium and Luxembourg, Rajendra Abhyankar accompanied the Indian parliamentary delegation at the meetings.