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India seeks jobs pact with Malaysia

India urges the Malaysian Govt to hasten the process of signing a Memorandum of Understanding for workers' safeguards, reports Jatin Gandhi.

india Updated: Jan 10, 2008 01:46 IST
Jatin Gandhi
Jatin Gandhi
Hindustan Times

Back from a three-day official visit to Malaysia, Defence Minister AK Antony said on Wednesday that he had urged the Malaysian government to speed up signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries to safeguard the interests of Indian workers there and those from Malaysia, in India.

Antony told reporters on the sidelights of a function to kick off golden jubilee celebrations of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) that the issue had come up in his talks with the foreign minister of the country. “In my talks with the foreign minister, I urged him to hasten the process of signing a MoU (memorandum of understanding) on the employment of Indians in Malaysia and Malaysians in India. He promised to expedite the process,” he said. When asked whether the issue of banning Indian workers also came up during the discussions, the minister said no such thing was mentioned.

(PTI adds: A day after reports about a ban on recruitment of Indian workers in Malaysia, the Centre on Wednesday said Kuala Lumpur has denied any such move, asserting that there was no proposal to this effect. Union Overseas Affairs Minister Vayalar Ravi said the Malaysian government has denied issuance of any circular banning recruitment of Indians and clarified that there was no such move.

“Malaysian Home Ministry held a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today and denied any such move. This information was given to me by the Indian High Commission in Kuala Lumpur,” he told a press conference here.)

Another high-point of Antony’s visit was that the Malaysians have shown interest in acquiring the Akash missile system, which was recently completed by the DRDO. “I have given them a positive reply,” the minister said. A day earlier, DRDO top scientists had said in New Delhi that the organisation is keen on selling the missile system but it was for the ministries of Defence and External Affairs to decide. “They (the Malaysians) read about the successful trials of the missile and have shown interest in it,” Antony said.