Visiting Gujarat Delegation Meets US Diplomats But Indian MPs Miss Out

US Secretary of State John Kerry addresses Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and attendees at the Global CEO Conclave at the end of the 7th Vibrant Gujarat Summit in Gandhinagar, India, on January 11, 2015

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Washington, DC – A high-level delegation from the Western Indian state of Gujarat was hosted by the US State Department officials according to a statement from the department.

A State Department Official in a statement said, “Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Nisha Biswal hosted a meeting with a delegation from the Indian State of Gujarat, led by Resident Commissioner Bharat Lal and accompanied by Indian Charge d’Affaires Ambassador Taranjit Singh Sandhu on September 15.”

Praising Resident Commissioner Lal for his efforts to make the State of Gujarat a model of innovation and sustainable economic growth and reform for India, the Assistant Secretary Biswal also announced the United States’ intent, “to participate as a Partner Country in the 2017 Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit, the Government of Gujarat’s biennial investors’ summit that brings together global business leaders, investors, corporations, thought leaders, and policymakers.”

Other attendees were Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for South Asia at the National Security Council Dr. Peter Lavoy; US Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Global Markets Arun Kumar; Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs Charles Rivkin; and Special Representative for Commercial and Business Affairs Ziad Haider.

On the other hand, seven Members of Indian Parliament (MPs) across party lines, also visited the US capital and met with elected representatives, policy experts, and industry members for a deeper understanding of India-US relations. There was, however, no interaction with the State Department office which is the external affairs branch of the US government. The delegation included: Baijayant “Jay” Panda – Biju Janata Dal; Anurag Thakur – Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP); Harish Chandra Meena – BJP; Neeraj Shekhar – Samajwadi Party; Jayadev Galla – Telugu Desam Party; Rajeev Satav – Indian National Congress and Sushmita Dev – Indian National Congress.

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