India seeks to balance ties with Israel, Palestine

  • Jayanth Jacob, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Oct 06, 2014 23:36 IST

In a balancing act, the government has set the ball rolling on setting up an India-Palestine centre of excellence in information technology and digital innovation, even as the Modi administration readied the stage for greater cooperation with Israel.

The India-Palestine centre of excellence in ICT and digital learning & innovation is slated to come up in Ramallah, sources said.

The plan was first mooted in 2011 and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed in September 2012 to set up a state-of-the-art centre, but the plan didn’t take off successfully.

The idea behind the project is to create a pool of IT experts who can be gainfully employed. The plan also includes providing specialised training in the field of information communication technology in India to Palestinian IT professionals who will then impart training to even more Palestinians, making the ICT centre self-reliant.

The centre for development of advanced computing (CDAC), a key research and development organisation of the department of electronics and information technology under the ministry of communications and information technology, had been named the implementing agency for this project. This was one of the highlights of

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s visit to India in 2012.

Though India hasn’t changed its position on supporting UN resolutions favouring Palestine, the NDA government has been improving its ties with Israel and Prime Minister Narendra Modi met his Israel counterpart on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly recently.

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