After meeting Modi, US ambassador meets Gujarat Cong leaders

Last Updated: Friday, February 14, 2014 - 00:15

Gandhinagar: After meeting Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and ending her country`s refusal to engage with him for the last nine years, the US ambassador to India Nancy Powell to Thursday also met leader of opposition in the Gujarat Assembly Shankarsinh Vaghela.

Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee president Arjun Modhwadia and former GPCC chief Siddharth Patel too were present at the meeting that lasted for about 50 minutes.

"The meeting was a routine one. We discussed the current political situation, judicial system, and human rights situation in the state," Vaghela later told reporters.

On the issue of grant of US visa to the Chief Minister Modi, he said it did not figure in the discussion.

"We want USA to give visa to Modi. But they have their own foreign policy, based on which they decide whether to give it or not," he said.

"There were talks on Gujarat`s development. We apprised the ambassador of the poor Human Development Index (HDI) of Gujarat. Gujarat lags behind in comparison to other states of India in HDI," Vaghela said.

On human rights situation, Vaghela told the ambassador that that police officers were languishing in jails for various fake encounters.
Vaghela said he also told the US envoy that it seemed as if there was a one-man rule in the state and others had no right to raise their voice, since 2002.

The leader of opposition said that he explained to Powell that Congress had not announced its Prime Ministerial candidate because the elected MPs elect the Prime Minister, only after the election. The upcoming elections, he said, were being fought on the lines of Presidential elections in USA, which goes beyond the Constitution.

Later, Powell visited Sun Edission solar power plant near the Pandit Deendayal Upadhayay University on the outskirts of the city, and a Self Employed Women`s Association (SEWA) centre in Navrangpura area.

PTI

First Published: Friday, February 14, 2014 - 00:15

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