Tuesday 23 October 2018 2:29 AM UTC
LONDON Oct 23: India’s outgoing High Commissioner Y K Sinha has said the UK will find India a reliable partner whatever turn its exit negotiations with the European Union (EU) may take.
Speaking at one of many farewell events being organised here to mark his retirement from the Indian Foreign Service at the end of this month, the diplomat described his UK posting as the “crowning glory” of his 37-year career because he leaves at a time when UK-India relations are poised to “reap the dividends across the board”.
“We are very hopeful that after Brexit, whatever turn it takes, the UK will find India as a very reliable partner,” Sinha said while addressing a Conservative Friends of India (CFIN) event.
“Within the Commonwealth, India is the largest member-state in terms of population and the fastest growing economy. And, in the not-too-distant future, we will be the number one economy in the Commonwealth. So, we will be the engine that drives the Commonwealth and the global economy,” he noted.
The CFIN, as the group set up to foster Britain’s ruling Conservative Party’s connect with the Indian diaspora, had organised the farewell in London earlier this week attended by senior government and Tory parties figures such as Secretary of State for International Development Penny Mordaunt and MPs Bob Blackman and Paul Scully.
“I can’t be partisan, but I would say the Conservative Party of late has been very receptive to the concerns of the Indian diaspora and India-UK relations, and the government has made an extra effort to reach out,” Sinha said.
CFIN co-chair Rami Ranger praised the diplomat’s hard-work in fostering closer India-UK ties and building a “magnificent” connection between the Indian diaspora and the Indian High Commission in London.
Among a series of farewell receptions this month, the diplomat was also hosted by leading industrialist G P Hinduja, who called for longer terms for Indian High Commissioners in the UK.
“High Commissioners’ tenure should be a minimum of five years so they don’t leave soon after setting the ball rolling and before it reaches the goal post,” said Hinduja, the Co-Chair of the Hinduja Group.
Sinha will retire at the end of the month, with his successor Ruchi Ghanashyam set to take charge in early November.
CLICK TO FOLLOW UKMALAYALEE.COM