US tells India to take Bush's food habit comment positively

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Washington, May 10 : The United States State Department has asked India to take comments made by President George Bush and Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice that calorie intake of Indians is contributing to higher food prices positively.

"I've seen the press reports about this particular reaction. And certainly nobody in the US is trying to single out government or is expressing the sentiment that it is not a good thing that there's greater calorie intake among more people around the world than ever before. That is a positive thing," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack told reporters.

"The fact that you have greater economic prosperity around the world, whether it's in India or China or elsewhere around the world, and as a result there are different standards of living, in a positive sense, that is good for the international system," he added.

Comments of Condoleezza Rice and Bush were not viewed favourably in many sections in India, including in the political establishment.

"That really speaks to some of the goals that were expressed at the inception of the current international, financial, economic and political system, when you look back to the immediate post-war period in '46, '47, '48. It is a positive thing."

"I am not sure what prism people are viewing the remarks through. But I would encourage them to not look at them in a way that is intended to single out in a negative fashion the people of India or anybody else around the world," McCormack said.

ANI

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