PM Modi meets US Vice President Mike Pence in Singapore; discusses H1-B visa issue
Singapore, Nov 14: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US vice president Mike Pence met in Singapore on Wednesday on the sidelines of the East Asia Summit.
The meeting between PM Modi and Pence comes weeks after US president Donald Trump turned down PM Modi's invite to India's Republic Day as chief guest due to "scheduling constraints".
Modi shared India's "serious concern" at the "mainstreaming" of Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed, who carries a $10 million bounty, in Pakistan's recent elections.
Stressing that there was some discussion on the issue of terrorism and Pence referred to the coming 10th anniversary of 26/11, Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said the Prime Minister reminded him that "in one way or another, all the traces or all the leads in global terror attacks ultimately lead to a single source, a single place of origin".
"Modi told Pence that Indian professionals not only took to America the talent and capacity to innovate and excel but also carried with them "democratic values" they were imbued with," Gokhale added.
"And, in that context, the Prime Minister, therefore, expressed the hope that this would be the approach that United States might take when it looks at the whole issue of the H-1B visa and this was appreciated by Vice President Pence," he further said.
The US waiver on sanctions against Iran, as well as the waiver on India's purchase of the S-400 system, are some of the issues, which have come up in the last few weeks.
On the sidelines of the ASEAN summit, officials from India, Japan, the US and Australia will also meet as part of the Quadrilateral grouping. This will be the third meeting of Quad, which was revived in November last year on the sidelines of the East Asia and ASEAN summits in Manila (Philippines).
Modi will also have a breakfast meeting with ASEAN leaders as there will be no ASEAN - India summit - ASEAN rules bar dialogue partners to have two summits in a year. Since all 10 ASEAN leaders came to India for a commemorative summit in January this year and attended the Republic Day celebrations as chief guests, India is meeting them in a different format.