Singh Roars On Kashmir, Outsourcing8 November 2010
Times of India
New Delhi: The normally shy and reticent Manmohan Singh was uncharacteristically outspoken on Monday. Even as US President Barack Obama gave his usual spiel on India-Pakistan relations at a joint press conference, asking India to resume dialogue and resolve the Kashmir issue, Singh did some plain speaking. 'We're not afraid of the K-word,' he said. 'But talks can only happen when Pakistan has ceased its policy of terror-induced coercion. You (Pakistan) cannot simultaneously be talking and the terror machine is active as ever before.' The sharpness of the PM's retort was particulary telling since he is known to have a soft spot for two countries -US and Pakistan. It's no secret that he wants to resolve disputes with Pakistan during his tenure. The PM also took on the outsourcing bogey raised by the American media, pointedly saying, 'Indians are not in the business of stealing jobs from Americans.' Obama had spent the last couple of days telling everybody that there was a perception in the US that American jobs were being shipped out to India, because of outsourcing. In recent months, he too has slammed outsourcing to India, from a bully pulpit in Ohio, warning the US against being 'Bangalored'. On Monday, it was Singh's turn. 'The outsourcing industry, I believe, has helped to improve the productive capacity and productivity of American industries.' It's the sharpest retort the PM has made on the subject.