NEW DELHI: As Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar is in the US with security of Indian immigrants in the country on the top his agenda, President Donald Trump condemned the shooting of an Indian in Kansas last week during his maiden address to the US Congress.
Trump’s speech, however, indicated that he was unrelenting on his stand on tightening immigration rules.
"We condemn hate in all its ugly forms, the threats targeting Jewish centres and the Kansas shooting," said Trump in his first address to the after his inauguration on January 20.
While one Indian Srinivas Kuchibhotla was killed another Alok Madasani was injured in the shooting where the perpetrator, a navy veteran Adam Purinton mistook them for immigrants from Middle East.
While the US Embassy in New Delhi issued a statement condemning the incident the same day, there was no official statement from the US government on the issue. It was on Feb 28 that the Foreign Secretary reached the US to convey India’s concerns about the safety of its Diaspora and the effects of tightening of visa norms on its IT workforce.
It was only on Wednesday that the White House’s Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Sander issued a statement, “It begins to look like this was an act of racially-motivated hatred, and we want to reiterate that the President condemns these and any other racially or religiously motivated attacks in the strongest terms.”
Following his condemnation of the shooting President Trump also defended his intentions to tighten immigration rules. "We are going to move away from lower-skilled immigration and adopt a merit-based system. By finally enforcing immigration laws, we will raise wages, help the unemployed, save billions of dollars and make our communities safer," Trump said.
India seeks to establish a rapport with the Trump administration at the earliest as the conservatism spawned by the US would be hampering India’s economic interests. In this India would be leveraging the potential of its huge market to bring the Trump administration to pay heed to its interests.