Finance Minister Sitharaman
Finance Minister Sitharaman
Image source: ANI

Finance Minister Sitharaman mentioned in an interview with Reuters on Tuesday that India wants to comply with the global sanctions, including U.S. sanctions on Venezuela and Russia, but needs to maintain its own strength and strategic interests. This comment was followed by the United States’ imposition of toughest sanctions on Venezuela’s oil in January 2019. While, Indian refiner Reliance Industries LTD (RELI.NS) has been buying Venezuelan crude oil from Russian major Rosneft (ROSN.MM). Now the company has set to resume the direct oil loadings in the South American nation. Sitharaman said the Indian government has expressed its view to the United States.

“In specific issues which are critical for India’s strategic interests, we have explained to the United States that India is a strategic partner for the United States of America and you want a strategic partner to be strong and not weakened. We value the strong partnership with the USA, but we should equally be allowed to be a strong economy,” was told by Sitharaman to Reuters.

The International Monetary Fund explained that the U.S. China trade war will cut global growth of 2019 to slowest. On Tuesday 15th October 2019, IMF noted the lowest outlook for Indian growth in 2019, citing weaker-than-expected domestic demand.

Sitharaman said to Reuters, “Global headwinds ... are getting stronger by the day.” When she was asked about further fiscal stimulus, she said, “I have not closed the door. New Delhi has been trying to boost domestic growth through an infrastructure package and a new loan programme organised with the banking sector that has doled out loans worth over 80,000 crore. (8.7 billion pounds)”

FM supported the action of the government of abolishing Article 370 in August 2019. She mentioned that the removal of the constitutional article that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir will boost the region and the country’s economic potential. While the facts received shows that since the government has ban article 370, phone networks are shutoff, imposition of curfew-like restrictions in some areas, and arrested thousands including hundreds of local leaders.

For decades before India’s recent actions, women, scheduled castes, and nomadic tribes were denied human rights in Kashmir, Sitharaman said. “Where was the global community’s human rights concern at that time?”

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