Grievances of Indian community to be taken up with Iran, says Swaraj
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Sunday assured the Indian community here that their problems and grievances would be taken up with the Iranian authorities and complemented their contribution to the oil-rich Persian Gulf nation.
Swaraj, who arrived here on Saturday, began her engagement by visiting a gurudwara at the heart of Tehran which was established in 1941.
Addressing a gathering at the gurudwara, Swaraj said that Indian government would take up all the difficulties being faced by the Indian community in the Persian Gulf nation.
“I am commencing my visit to Iran with a new energy after meeting with Indian community,” she told the gathering.
Swaraj also paid a visit to a Kendriya Vidyalaya.
“Our centuries old and civilisational links with Iran have been strengthened by the cultural activities of the Indian school,” she said.
The Kendriya Vidyalaya was set up in 1955 by the Indian community and the Indian embassy had taken over its administration in 2004. The school currently has students from around 16 different communities, including from a number of foreign countries.
In her interaction with the students, Swaraj asked them to focus on their roles and study hard.
Swaraj’s visit is seen as a balancing act by India as it came nearly two weeks after Prime Minister Narendra Modi travelled to Saudi Arabia, another West Asian power which considers Iran its rival.
Iran is an important country for India for its energy security as well as to get access to oil and gas-rich Central Asian nations. India imports close to 12 million tonnes of crude from Iran and it is looking at increasing the oil import from the country.
Swaraj heads to Moscow, after Iran
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Sunday headed for Russian capital Moscow for the second leg of her two-nation visit, during which she will attend the annual Foreign Ministers’ meeting of Russia, India and China (RIC).
“Khuda Hafez Tehran! EAM @SushmaSwaraj departs Iran for Moscow for the 2nd leg of her tour,” Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Vikas Swarup tweeted.
Swaraj’s visit to Moscow will see her attend the annual Foreign Ministers’ meeting of RIC. Besides attending the RIC meeting, she is also expected to have a bilateral meet with her Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in Moscow.