The visit was the latest in a series by senior British government ministers emphasising that Britain is keen to develop a stronger, wider, deeper partnership with India. The Secretary of State visited Kolkata and New Delhi.
In Kolkata, Sajid Javid met the West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for bilateral talks. He hosted a Round Table on UK-India museum partnerships. He also launched the first all girls football team as part of British Council’s programme with the Premier League. Amongst several events to promote culture and tourism, Sajid Javid also participated in a ceremony to commemorate the World War One centenary and the one million Indians who fought in it.
In New Delhi, Sajid Javid met Ravi Shankar Prasad, India’s Minister for Law, Communications and IT on the sidelines of the UK-funded Cyber Governance Security conference, where he delivered the keynote speech. He also met Sripad Yasso Naik, India’s Minister for Culture and Tourism. Sajid Javid, who leads an advisory group to support the Gandhi statue to be unveiled outside the UK Parliament, also visited Rajghat and Gandhi Smriti. During his visit to the British Council he engaged with young Indian creative entrepreneurs and Indians who have studied in the UK. He also announced a new £1.5 million lottery fund to build creative connections between the people of England and India. In addition to this investment, the British Council has committed £5 million to the Re-Imagine Arts programme which runs from 2013 to 2017.
Speaking towards the end of his four- day visit to India, the Secretary of State said:
Cultural relations between India and the UK are strong. From supporting each others’ rich heritages to collaboration in the creative industries, our people to people ties are deep underpinned by the Indian diaspora in the UK. Their success is a testament to the openness of British society to talent from around the world.
Stuart Adam, Director,
Press and Communications
British High Commission,
Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110021
Tel: 44192100; Fax: 24192411
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