Apparently wary of being seen as pro-China, Congress leader Karan Singh on Wednesday refused to accept the China-India Friendship Award conferred by Premier Wen Jiabao on nine personalities from various fields. Karan Singh, Rajya Sabha member and president of Indian Council of Cultural Relations, did not turn up for the ceremony in the evening where Wen honoured prominent persons, including CPM leader Sitaram Yechury.
Sources said Singh turned down the award as he felt that an MP accepting such decorations might run the risk of being seen as favouring a particular country. Prof Tan Chung, G Viswanathan, G Banerjee, M Mohanty, S Chakrabarty, Bhaskaran, Sherdill and Pallavi Aiyar were the other awardees. PTI
PM hosts private dinner for Wen
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh hosted a private dinner for Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao. There was no meeting between the two before the dinner, which was attended by Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, leaders of Opposition Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley, CPM leader Sitaram Yechury, BJD leader Jay Panda and national security adviser Shiv Shanker Menon. HTC