New Delhi: Any country that seeks aid would prefer to engage with India rather than China because they know New Delhi will not engage in any "arm-twisting", Union Minister Gen. (retd) VK Singh said on Saturday.
Singh, a former chief of the Indian Army, said that the countries seeking aid from China are aware that some amount of arm-twisting will take place.
"Today if you see China, in large parts of the world it is there because its economy is supporting it... Again it is an interesting issue (that) all the countries which seek or take aid, (they) view India and China differently. They would much rather engage with us, because we do not arm-twist them," he said.
The Minister of State for External Affairs said the countries know that when they take assistance from China, "arm twisting will take place... Whether it is in terms of taking concessions from them, whether it is asking for certain favours, arm-twisting takes place".
Speaking at a panel discussion here on 'Emerging Dynamics of Modi Government's Foreign Policy', Singh also rejected suggestions that the Prime Minister's Office and National Security Adviser take decisions regarding foreign policy vis-a -vis Pakistan and Afghanistan.
"(That) perception is not correct," he said. Singh said policy decisions are taken depending on the pros and cons involved.
Dismissing the perception that the Ministry of External Affairs is kept out of decisions on Pakistan and Afghanistan, he said that these are based on inputs and the view that MEA is not involved when it comes to Pakistan and Afghanistan "is not correct".