Congress leader Anand Sharma speaking at a press conference in New Delhi on Friday. Photo/ANI
Congress leader Anand Sharma speaking at a press conference in New Delhi on Friday. Photo/ANI

More H1B visas for Indians, restoring developing nation tag to India: Congress lays down expectations from Trump's visit

ANI | Updated: Feb 21, 2020 18:42 IST

New Delhi [India], Feb 21 (ANI): Congress on Friday said that US President Donald Trump's visit to India will reap benefits only if America enhances the quota of H1B visas, restore the General System of Preferences (GSP), and recognise India as a developing country.
"Donald Trump's visit must have tangible outcomes, only then it can be termed a successful from the Indian perspective. The USA and President Trump have withdrawn the General System of Preferences (GSP) benefit to the Indian products, and exports. The USA has also declared India a developed country, equating India with rich countries, including China," said Congress leader Anand Sharma said at a press conference here.
"China's per capita income is five times that of India and their GDP is also five times that of India. India, with a per capita income of two thousand dollars, cannot be declared a developed country," he added.
"Because as a developed country, the H1 visas, even for IT personnel, will drastically come down. It is important that this (Trump's) visit reverses what has happened...We hope, given the special friendship between PM Narendra Modi and President Trump, for the enhancement of H1B visas, restoration of GSP, and also reversing the present decision and recognising India as a developing country soon," he added.
"We are a sovereign country, therefore, we have the right to engage with other countries on our own terms. It should not be so that a waiver is given to purchase some systems from Russia and then an equal amount must be spent to purchase other systems from the USA. Each strategic relation is unique and unlinked to any other relation," said Sharma.
The senior Congress leader, however, said that the party values India-US relations and cooperation across sectors.
"It is a very important visit as India and the USA share a very strategic partnership in nuclear, defence, technological and other sectors. Congress values India's partnership with the USA in defence and space sciences," he said.
Trump will be on a two-day visit to India from February 24 at the invitation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. (ANI)