Prime Minister Narendra Modi will travel to China this week for an informal summit meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping on April 27 to 28.
Calling this a bold step, former foreign Secretary Jaishankar remarked, "They will be meeting in an informal environment. The agenda will be open. They will spend a lot of time over two days and there will be different kind of conversations, much more personal interactive."
In an exclusive interview with ANI, Jaishankar said PM Modi has always given importance to personal engagement with top world leaders. "President Obama, President Trump, President Putin, and to some extent PM Abe... PM Modi has often engaged people because personal leadership and engagement are very important. This seems to be the thinking with the Chinese as well," he said.
"The purpose of the informal summit is that leaders decide what they want to discuss. I don't think anybody should predict what they'll discuss. The fact that the two leaders are meeting, should answer the question," he said further on the issues to be taken up at the meeting.
"Indians should see it as a very sincere effort on the part of both countries and leaders to improve their relationships. It is in our national interest that it succeeds so good wishes over everybody should be there for the success of this summit," he added.
"When the world is going through a lot of uncertainty if India and China find a more productive relationship that would be very much to the benefit of the world. In fact, this was the thinking when last year Prime Minister Modi met Chinese President Xi Jinping in Astana. The message out of that meeting was India and China relations are a factor of stability in an uncertain world. Many countries, especially in Asia, would welcome this news of this informal summit as indeed in India," Jaishankar said.
This will be fourth visit of Mr. Modi to China after he came to power in 2014. He is again due to visit China to take part in the SCO summit to be held at Qingdao city on June 9-10.
The Modi-Xi summit meeting is taking place in the backdrop of a series of high level interactions between the two countries, starting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang's visit to India in December, the first after Doklam standoff.
OneIndia News (with ANI inputs)