Thursday, November 20, 2014

Indian Cabinet approves pacts with SAARC countries on power, tourism and Railways

With 18th SAARC summit coming nearer, the Union cabinet of India today cleared three key framework agreements with member-countries to enhance rail and road connectivity and setting up of a regional power grid. Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi's is visiting Nepal for attending the SAARC summit starting few days ahead.

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) between India and Nepal for strengthening cooperation in the field of tourism was also given a green signal by the cabinet. The memorandum is proposed to be signed during Modi's visit to Nepal beginning 25 November.

India is the sixth-biggest donor to Afghanistan's reconstruction since the fall of the Taliban and has been involved in various infrastructure development and capacity-building projects as part of a $2-billion aid programme. Afghanistan is home to major natural resource deposits including iron ore and natural gas, which India hasn't been able to harness because of logistical and other reasons. The country is also the gateway to Central Asia and beyond, making it a country of major strategic interest to Delhi.

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