Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday voiced New Delhi’s concerns over the restrictions on water flow in the trans-border rivers, due to Beijing’s plans to construct three new dams on the Brahmaputra, and the urgent need to address the bilateral trade deficit by giving the Indian firms’ increased access to the Chinese market, at the official banquet hosted for his visiting Chinese counterpart Li Keqiang.
According to official sources, there was also a “lengthy discussion” on the current international economic situation, which focused on the ways to improve the gloomy global economy. “This laid the stage for the formal, more wide-ranging discussions that will be held tomorrow on (Monday),” they said.
A little over 27 years ago, Li, then in his thirties, had visited India as head of a Communist Youth League delegation.
After an hour of talks, it was time for a high-powered dinner, where UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi was present, along with Union External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid, Leaders of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha and the Lok Sabha -- Arun Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj, CPM chief Prakash Karat and Montek Singh Ahluwalia.