New Delhi: India and Britain on Monday pledged to fight terrorism and bring to justice terror groups and those who encourage them even as the two countries agreed not to allow fugitives escape law in each other's territory.
As Prime Minister Theresa May made her first bilateral visit outside Europe and held extensive talks with her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi, officials handed over a list of 57 fugitives New Delhi wants to be extradited and hoped for early extradition of industrialist Vijay Mallya to face probe in the money laundering case against him.
After more than three hours of "extensive" talks, the two Prime Ministers agreed on boosting trade ties, with May saying that during her visit alone, India and the UK will ink more than GBP 1 billion (Rs 83,00 crore) of business deals.
At a joint press interaction with Modi, May announced two business-centric visa programmes -Registered Traveller Scheme and Great Club-- while India drew her attention to its students and working professionals getting impacted by the stringent visa norms in the UK.
As per official UK figures, the number of study visas issued to Indian nationals fell from 68,238 in 2010 to 11,864 this year.
While boosting trade and simplifying visa regime apart from security and defence cooperation were among the key bilateral issues, the two leaders also discussed regional and international matters of mutual interest including the need for South Asia to be stable, prosperous and free from terror.
They called upon all countries to work towards that goal.
"Both Prime Ministers acknowledged that terrorism and violent extremism poses one of the most serious threats to international peace and security and in this regard called for concerted global action without selectivity.
"The two leaders called for urgent measures to counter and prevent the spread of terrorism, violent extremism and radicalisation," a joint statement issued after the talks said.radicalisation," a joint statement issued after the talks said.
The two sides underlined the importance of maintaining the legal order for the seas and oceans based on the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
The remarks are seen as a veiled reference to the recent order by the UN on the South China Sea that was criticised by China, which refused to accept it.
Reaffirming their respect for and commitment to the freedom of navigation and overflight based on the universally recognised principles of international law, as reflected in the UNCLOS, the two leaders stated that all related territorial and jurisdictional disputes should be resolved by peaceful means, without resorting to the threat or use of force.
"They urged States to respect UNCLOS and refrain from activities which prejudice the peace, good order and security of the oceans," the statement said.
Earlier in the day, May, who arrived here last night, inaugurated UK-India Tech Summit jointly with Modi and will fly to Bangaluru tomorrow where she will attend business events.