Following U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s visit to India, Ambassador Nirupama Rao spoke at Brookings India about the takeaways from discussions between US and Indian officials. Elaborating on the bilateral interactions on a variety of topics, including education, clean energy, trade and immigration, Rao emphasized the strengths of the relationship.
Joined by Ambassador Nancy Powell, the U.S. Ambassador to India, Rao dismissed talk of the U.S.-India relationship ‘drifting’ or ‘plateauing’. Rather, both Ambassadors stressed that the progress that is taking place is often downplayed in the media. Rao noted that the areas of conflict tend to be focused on, rather than the points of convergence. In the field of education, India and the U.S. have scaled up cooperation with an acknowledgement of the need for more exchange programmes and partnerships that will allow students in both countries to face future challenges. Rao’s talk led to engaging discussion of intellectual property laws, the immigration bill that passed in the U.S. Senate, India’s role in Afghanistan and the future of bilateral trade.
When asked about the future of India-U.S. relations, Rao quoted English poet Robert Browning, “Grow old along with me, the best is yet to be.” Those present included Som Mittal, President of NASSCOM;; Indrani Bagchi, Foreign Editor of The Times of India; and Sameer Saran, Vice President of the Observer Research Foundation.
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