YK Sinha, India’s new high commissioner to the United Kingdom, has urged the British and western news media to focus on positive stories from India instead of the negative ones appearing here.
“I am afraid there are far too many negative stories from India. There is much positive that is happening. In 2015-16, FDI in India was nearly 120 billion dollars. Highlighting positive stories will help both countries, particularly in the area of trade and economy,” Sinha said while interacting with the media on Monday.
Speaking at the Nehru Hall of India House where representatives of major British news organisations and Indian journalists, Sinha promised to maintain his ‘media outreach’ during his tenure in London.
“There is a good story to tell…The media here has been harsh on Prime Minister Theresa May’s visit to India. The focus was on visa, but there was much positive happening in other areas; for example, the Newton-Bhabha fund and the UK-India Education and Research Initiative,” he said.
Sinha also said Britain needed to “sort out” the student visa system, which has led to a major drop in the number of Indian students coming to the country: “There is a bit of a problem, something going wrong here. Indian students do extremely well wherever they go. We need to see how we can attract good students.”
Once the favourite destination for Indian students, the number has fallen from 39,090 in 2010-11 to 16,745 in 2015-16, according to the Higher Education Statistics Agency.
The envoy also raised the issues related to Indian IT professionals. Noting that India and Britain would together celebrate 2017 as the “Year of Culture”, he sought the support of the media representatives to make it a success and help improve bilateral relations.