New Cameron govt for ‘enhanced’ ties with India

  • Prasun Sonwalkar, Hindustan Times, London
  • Updated: May 27, 2015 23:38 IST

Seeking an “enhanced” relationship with India and China was among the key points mentioned in the Queen’s Speech to the new parliament on Wednesday, including mention of a new bill on a referendum Britain’s membership of the European Union.

Under PM David Cameron, the terminology of Britain’s relationship with India has changed from a US-style “new special relationship” formulated in 2010, to an “enhanced” relationship now.

“My government looks forward to an enhanced partnership with India and China”, Queen Elizabeth said during the ceremonial opening of the new parliament session. The Queen’s Speech, written by the new government, set out a busy agenda for the first Conservative-majority government since 1996.

It included measures that the Cameron government could not initiate during the previous coalition government.

Reiterating Cameron’s claim that his government was one for the “working people”, the speech included a bill banning increase in income tax, VAT and national insurance for five years, and another giving intelligence agencies new tools to target internet data — dubbed a “snooper’s charter” by critics.

She said,“My government will renegotiate the United Kingdom’s relationship with the European Union and pursue reform of the European Union for the benefit of all member states. Alongside this, legislation will be introduced to provide for an in-out referendum on membership of the EU before the end of 2017”.

Cameron said before the speech, “We have a mandate from the British people, a manifesto and the instruction to deliver. We will not waste a single moment”. The House of Commons began a debate on the speech on Wednesday.

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