Minister of Home Affairs Rajnath Singh will visit Russia and the United States (U.S.) next week to discuss the issue of Pakistan encouraging terrorism in India. He will also discuss ways to counter the increasing influence of the Islamic State (Isis) group in the country and the neighbouring regions.
Singh's two-nation tour will begin next Sunday, Sept. 18. He will first go on a five-day visit to Russia to hold bilateral talks with Russian Minister for Internal Affairs Vladimir Kolokoltsev. The two leaders will discuss Pakistan-sponsored terrorism in the violence-hit state of Jammu and Kashmir and the rise in terror activities of Isis in India and its neighbouring countries.
Issues related to Indo-Russia joint anti-terror cooperation will also be discussed, the Press Trust of India (PTI) reported.
Singh will then depart for a seven-day visit to Washington on Sept. 26 to take part in the Indo-U.S. Homeland Security Dialogue with his American counterpart Jeh Charles Johnson. Cross-border terrorism and Isis terror activities in south Asia will feature majorly in discussions, with intelligence inputs also being shared.
"In both the bilateral visits to Russia and the US, the Home Minister will highlight Pakistan's direct involvement in cross border terrorism and growing activities of the Middle East terror group in India and its neighbourhood... The bilateral visits of the Home Minister are part of India's efforts to create global opinion against Pakistan sponsored terrorism in India," an official from the home ministry was quoted by the agency as saying.
Other important issues that are likely to be discussed during the two visits include real-time sharing of intelligence inputs, anti-terror cooperation, cyber security and critical infrastructure protection, global supply chain security, countering illicit finance, extradition of criminals, megacity policing and science and technology, and liberalisation of visas.
Singh will, on his U.S. visit, discuss a couple of important agreements that were signed recently, which include the Global Entry and the Homeland Security Presidential Directive-6 (HSPD-6). The former is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection programme that allows the speedy clearance of pre-approved, low-risk travellers upon their arrival in America, while the latter allows access to information on terrorists, PTI reported.
India's inclusion in the Global Entry, which will be extensively discussed during Singh's visit, will allow high dignitaries like former presidents, former prime ministers, former Union ministers, film stars, top industrialists and frequent flyers hassle-free visits to the U.S.
The home minister's visit is important for India because the government has highlighted the problem of Pak-sponsored terrorism on the international platform, thereby raising pressure on Pakistan.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke about this issue in his speeches at the G20 Summit, the BRICS meet and the ASEAN Summit urging the international community to intensify efforts and come together to combat terrorism and "isolate supporters and sponsors of terror."