HAASS: Welcome to the Council on Foreign Relations.
I am Richard Haass, president of CFR, and I'm delighted today to welcome and introducea man who needs little introduction, his excellency, Narendra Modi, prime minister of India.
The prime minister, as you all know and asyou've seen in our media, has taken New York City by storm.
Madison Square Garden has notseen such excitement since the Knicks last won a championship, which was so long agothat few who are witness are still with us today.
(LAUGHTER) Pardon for the parochial reference to ourno-longer-successful basketball team.
The prime minister may have come a long wayto be with us, but he wasn't the only traveler from India who logged a lot of miles thisweek.
India's Mars Orbiter also arrived at its destination just days ago.
My congratulationsto the prime minister and to all in his country who made this accomplishment possible.
Prime Minister Modi is the sixth sitting primeminister of India that we here at the Council on Foreign Relations have been fortunate enoughto host, and this reflects our longstanding commitment to the study of India, as wellas its relations with its neighbors and with the United States.
We are especially proud to host the primeminister during his first visit to the United States since assuming office following a trulyhistoric election 127 days ago.
His party won the first absolute majority in parliamentin thirty years.
Voter turnout — and all Americans should pay heed to this — voterturnout was an astounding 550 million individuals, 66 percent of the electorate went to the polls.
And the large mandate garnered from this turnout and outcome ignited a buzz of excitement inIndia and beyond and has led to high expectations for change.
Now, as many of you know, the prime ministerran on a platform that centered on good governance and economic growth and development in India,a message that reflected all he accomplished as chief minister in Gujarat.
But the primeminister will also have more than a little opportunity to focus on India's external relations,including those with this country.
As is often remarked upon, India and the UnitedStates are the world's two largest democracies.
The bilateral relationship is potentiallyone of the most important for the United States.
That said, I use the word "potentially" consciously,because we are not yet there.
Our relationship is underdeveloped in terms of trade and investment,energy security, and strategic cooperation on both regional issues, including South andEast Asia, as well as transnational issues, including terrorism and climate change.
And the challenge and the opportunity forboth countries, for both the United States and India, is to translate all this potentialinto reality.
I look forward to speaking with the prime minister on his plans for India,especially on his plans for its economy, and on the foreign policy and national securitychallenges he and his countries face.
First, however, the prime minister will deliversome remarks, and he'll do so in Hindi.
For those of you who are not yet fluent in Hindi,there are headphones.
Afterwards, the prime minister and I will sit down and conversationfor a few minutes before we open it up to our members for additional questions.
AndI want to let everyone know that this meeting is on-the-record.
So with that, again, I want to welcome PrimeMinister Modi to Council on Foreign Relations and invite him up here to this podium to deliverhis remarks.
Sir? (APPLAUSE) MODI (through translator): Dr.
Richard Haassand all the respected guests here, five previous prime ministers have had the opportunity totalk to you in this hall before.
I am the number six.
For the last three days, I havebeen in your city, and the encouragement and love and affection that I have got, for thatI am very grateful to this city and for U.
, and I express my gratitude from my heart.
Especially the tradition of CFR, which has created itsown credibility, and I would like to congratulate it for that, that they do not impose theirown ideas.
They listen to the ideas, they listen to the ideas of all the aspects, andthen present them before the world, and they leave it to the world that these are the differentideas, these are the different aspects.
You judge what is right and what's wrong.
I believe that in itself this is not a smallthing.
Otherwise, there is so much love of an institution, the institution is alwaysconcerned about its own image that somewhere or the other, they always try to color theirown ideas and impose their own ideas, but CFR has always tried to save itself continuouslyand has brought all the aspects together and presented them before everybody.
This is somethingfor which I would like to congratulate CFR from my heart.
Haass has had a very good relationshipwith India.
And in the last decade, the relationship between India and U.
has been given an impetus.
And in that, Dr.
Haass has played a very important role.
When Vajpayee was in government, atthat time, he had played a very important role.
And the entire government has alwaysremembered his contribution in a very positive way, and even today I would like to expressmy gratitude to Dr.
Haass for this.
Haass just told us that after thirtyyears for the first time in India a government has been elected with full absolute majority.
And that party which was always in the opposition, such a party has come to power.
And for thefirst time in India, such a person has got the opportunity to become the prime ministerwho was born in independent India.
So far, all the prime ministers that have been inour country were born in the British era.
And that is why I'm a person who did not getthe opportunity to see the days of slavery.
I was born and I — as soon as I was born,I took my first breath in the democracy.
And in each breath of mine, there is democracy.
And because of my firm faith in democracy, today a person of very humble grounding hascome to the highest office.
This is the power of democracy.
This is the first time that we got absolutemajority.
And because of that, almost two generations who had been sitting there keepingall their expectations and aspirations, suddenly there has been a boil, and every single youthin India who is about forty to forty-five year old today, from the age of ten to theage of forty, he has only seen instability, disappointment, that kind of an atmosphereis all he has seen.
And when this situation has come, it is natural,his expectations have risen a lot.
And to fulfill those expectations is our duty.
Indiais a very wide country.
To understand its election is also a very difficult task.
Andas books are written on elections in the Western countries, there is no such tradition in Indiaso far.
And because of that, the color and the way the elections are held and its perimeter,everything — unless and until somebody sees elections from close angle, he will not understandall of that, and perhaps in the world, it's such a large-scale elections taking placeand getting votes from so many people and become victorious is a huge task, but thepeople in India have given their blessings.
And in this election, we came with two majorsubjects.
One was a request for good governance, and the second was development.
We agree thatthe problems — the solution to all the problems cannot be found unless we can focus on thesetwo things.
Earlier, we used to have a habit that, youknow, just make the smaller sections happy, just throw them some loaves, and keep yourvote bank intact, and play with politics.
That's a very easy solution, a very easy way,and to stay in politics, the people in India were getting used to that.
But when we talk of good governance and developmentand getting up, raising yourself up from smaller issues, is a difficult thing.
But why peopleaccepted that is because the youth generation, the young generation in India, they're thinking,their way to think has changed.
They do not want to live anymore in small pieces.
Thetreatment that they have received so far, they are not happy with that, and they wantsomething new.
And India is a very fortunate country.
Itis the oldest civilization in the world.
Besides, it's also the most youthful country in theworld.
It's a very unique combination that we have.
We have a very great heritage, andwe are also the youngest country in the world.
Sixty-five percent of our population is underthirty-five year old.
And the aspiration of this youth, the ideasthat they have in their mind, it's a result of that that such a huge political transformationhas taken place.
It is definite that in politics stability in itself is a very big message.
We know that if we have stability, a common man will have confidence that now somethingwill go on the basis of the policies and laws and we'll be OK.
So by taking a decision to follow the policies,we have made — we have put a foundation — and people themselves are responsible for puttingthat foundation for development.
When I say good governance, I believe that there shouldbe minimum government and maximum government, because to run such a huge country, thereare so many traditions, rules, regulations, hierarchies, all these things are there thatbecome obstacles in their way.
And the government's own order becomes obstacles sometimes, problemssometimes.
My objective is to see how to make them easier, how to make them speedy, andI'm working in that direction.
How to bring transparency, that's what is our effort.
We are emphasizing on e-governance, electronicgovernance.
And because of that, there is a possibility — a full possibility of effectivegovernment, an easy government, we are emphasizing on that, too.
And secondly is development.
For development, we have two aspects.
One, on a world level, we should come on par withdeveloping countries.
And at the same time, the poorest of the poor person of my country,the last person in my country, how to bring transformation in his life, and when we talkabout India, there's one aspect that we forget about, and it's a demand of the time thatwe talk about it, and that is new middle class, people who have come out of the clutches ofpoverty, but they haven't reached the middle class yet, and now they do not want to goback into poverty.
This is a huge bulk.
Now, we want to address this new middle class.
If we can address new middle class, and we can bring changes in their economic life,then we can make sure that they are very firm, they're very sure about getting out of poverty.
But if we bring disappointment to them, and unfortunately, if they once again go backtowards poverty, then a poor person will never have the ambition to even get out of poverty,because they will believe, OK, you know, this is what God has destined for me and then Ishould just follow this as is and I should just accept my situation.
I want to change this.
And for that, whatplans can we have for this section is what we are emphasizing at this time.
When I saythat we should go — want to go at global level where we can increase our growth rate,our economy, we want to expedite our economy, it's better that in the first three months,we are going from 4.
5 percent to 5.
We been successful in increasing it by 1.
And the main reason behind that is that afterthe government was elected, there has been an atmosphere of confidence, of trust.
Andbecause of this confidence and trust atmosphere, it gives us the momentum.
Sometimes if a personis sick and if he's sick in a different city, unless and until he finds his own doctor,he cannot recover.
He needs his own doctor.
And it is his own confidence, his own trustin that treatment that gets him out of that disease, and that's where the confidence withwhich people have formed this government.
Now, they have formed this government andthey have some aspirations and ambitions that they want to fulfill, and because of that,there has been a confidence that has arisen in the hearts of people.
And trust and confidenceis doing a big, huge psychological thing.
And there is a magnetive effect, magneticeffect all around, and there is an atmosphere of race towards development, towards growth.
And if we want to come next to the developingcountries, this is what is important.
We want that our economy should move forward on thebasis of three pillars: agriculture, manufacturing, and service sector.
And we want to balanceall three.
In our entire economy, 30 percent contribution should be from agriculture, 30percent from manufacturing, and 30 percent from service sector.
If, you know, there isa point or so here and there, then the country's economy should not suffer.
This is the directionin which we want to go.
When we talk about manufacturing, we talk– we try to create a trust in make in India.
We are telling the world, make in India.
Comejoin us and make in India.
And I tell the people in India that you should also do suchmanufacturing that your product should work and be in demand in the world economy.
That's why I say zero defect, zero effect.
Our products should be such that it has zero defect and our process of our product shouldbe such that it has zero effect on the environment.
And that's why zero defect, zero effect issomething that we want to carry on with our manufacturing process and product.
And, therefore,we want to create our own place in the world.
When I talk about make in India, people fromthe world are here in every — every entrepreneur, every industrialist has to make — do manufacturing,and there is market available, but he's only worried how to do low-cost production, howto get effective governance, how to have security for this investment, and how he gets the properhuman resources for his own employees and for his officers, how he gets the qualityof life.
If we pay attention to these things, then the foreign investors can come and investthere.
India is a young country, and we are payingattention in skill development.
In skill development, I have two aspects.
One, by the year 2020,the world is going to need a lot of workforce.
World is going to need such a huge workforcethat it's a matter of concern where the workforce will come.
India is a young country.
The requirement– the workforce requirement of the world can be meted out by India.
It has that potential.
The world will need a lot of workforce.
And we want to do that work.
Similarly, we also want to do that skill developmentin which our entrepreneurs are — get ready and those should be the people who shouldbe job creators.
Small people with small industries or work can become job creators.
And then,in that way, there should be a network of small industries and our economy should goforward.
This is the direction in which we want to go.
And I'm sure that the steps that we have takenso far, those will have a direct impact, and in the last three months, the small shortduration of three months, as Dr.
Haass just told you, that in — on Mars planet, we havedone a big achievement.
You will be happy to know that in India, in different places,in small factories, small parts were manufactured, and our space scientists collected all ofthem.
And in a very small expenditure, we were ableto reach Mars in a very small expenditure.
If I talk about expenditure, a Hollywood movieis more expensive in its production than this.
A Hollywood movie, even less expense thana Hollywood movie.
We reached 650 million miles of journey to Mars, and we have reachedthere, and India is the first country in the world which was successful in its maiden attempt,in its first attempt.
People have taken — countries have taken seven to eight attempts, but Indiais the first country which was successful its very first attempt.
So — and people have the competence to manufacturethings.
And this is what we have told the world.
People in manufacturing sector, no,they don't need to see anything else, they should just take our — they should just studyour experience on Mars, and then after doing that case study, they can say, yes, we cango to Mars.
Such a huge achievement in such a small expenditureand with skill development, they'll understand if a person brings that product, he can doit.
And that is why make in India mission is something we are going forward with.
Weare emphasizing on skill development and we are trying to bring a lot of change in ourlaws.
We have done labor reforms, also.
I know in a country like India, from the politicalpoint of view, it means sometimes we're not very appropriate.
But the mandate that peoplehave given us, looking at that, I believe that I have to take my country into the directionof progress.
It's my duty.
And therefore, even if it is not politically needed, I wouldstill take very responsible steps, and ultimately that is going to go in favor of everybody.
We do not want that anybody should face any problems.
And if you have to do any labor reforms, youshould do it.
When it comes to central government, we will give you full cooperation betweencentral and state government.
India is the federal government, has a federal structure.
We have started the governance on the basis of team India, between center and states.
Why not they work together? If a company wants to come in and invest in a country, it comesand talks New Delhi, and Delhi doesn't have to do anything on its own.
It has to sendit to a different state.
But if the people in the states do not knowwhat to do, then they do not give a right response.
But if the central and the stateswork together as a team, then everybody will believe that I go to Delhi or go to a headquarterin any state, my work will never face any obstacles.
There is an atmosphere of confidencenow, and that is why team India is working and we have brought complete change in ourworking system and we are trying to move forward with that confidence.
Similarly, ease of business.
I know sometimesI say, in Hindu mythology, that if you go to four pilgrimages, then you will get — achievemoksha, that is salvation.
But in our country, a file can travel to thirty-two places, butit will still not reach the right place.
It will not reach salvation.
So I told them, the — how to move the filesquickly, and for that, we have changed the process.
If we have to fill a form, peoplewill have ten-page-long archaic forms.
And for each thing, they had to fill in a newform.
So I said this will not go on anymore.
I told all my officers, there should be aone-page form and no — never ask anybody anything else.
That means people feel theseare very small things, but we all know, no matter how big and huge the lock is, it willonly open with a small key, and that's why small things can open doors to bigger things.
And emphasizing that, we are trying to move our system forward towards progress.
About foreign direct investment, we have takeninitiatives in our very first budget.
The railway system in our country, people havenot paid attention to that.
But there is nothing bigger than this for economic development.
This is the second-largest railway line in the world.
If so much work in the railways and we needprivate investment in that.
For many years, it was not taking place.
A lot of industrialhouses people met me today, and they said we have heard a lot, but nothing really happened.
I've said, you've heard so far? Now this has happened.
This has taken place.
We have madeprovision in our budget officially.
We have allowed 100 percent FDI, that we want to upgraderailways, that we want to increase the speed of railways, that we want to expand railways,and that in India we want that railway should fulfill the main spirit in India for travel.
And I believe that trillions and trillionsof dollars of businesses there in India's railways itself.
It is linked with India'srailways.
And that's such a job for which you don't really need rocket science.
If peoplefrom a good factory come, they can work towards it.
I have the manpower, and you have themoney.
I have talent, you have business experience.
If we merge both of these, we can fulfillthis.
25 billion people's lives can only changewith these things.
And we are trying to bring those changes.
Even for environment, we areequally conscious.
When I was the chief minister in Gujarat, it was the fourth government inthe world which had a separate department for climate change, and we gave a lot of boostto climate change.
Eighty percent of solar energy, clean energywas manufactured in Gujarat, where I was the chief minister.
So we have emphasized everything.
Keeping environment in mind, we've also taken the task of cleaning the River Ganges, 2,500miles long Ganges, and 30 percent of the people are impacted by this River Ganges.
Their lifeis attached to this.
The economy of the villages of those areas are connected with this.
Ouragriculture sector is based on the River Ganges and north.
And whether it's Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh,Bihar, West Bengal, all these areas are such where it is our first priority to first againstpoverty and keep taking this task in mind, we have moved forward.
Of course, Ganges willbe cleaned.
Environment and production will also be paid attention to.
But at the sametime, those poor areas, we want that there should be — this should become a big basisfor generating economy there.
And I want to create a public movement, arevolution there to clean Ganges.
And I'm going to invite people from all over the world,people who believe — who have faith in the River Ganges, I'm going to invite them alsoto come.
But the work which is the most difficult work, that — how to make it environment-friendly,we are paying emphasis on that.
And in a way, economic development, the concernabout environment, skill development of the youth, expanding the possibilities of employment,bringing improvement in governance, working towards the effective governance, we are movingahead with all these things.
But along with that, there is no such country which can justprogress on its own.
The world has changed.
And we have to stay within the global requirements,and we have to maintain our balance with the global flows.
We have to walk shoulder-to-shoulderwith the global leaders.
Nobody can be a master of his own mind.
Wehave to work together.
And the philosophy of India that drives it and a country thatworks or moves in the shadow of philosophy sustains for a longer duration.
Those whowork with ideology will one day or the other topple.
Ideology has its limitations.
And that is why the philosophy of India that the entire world is a family,that's the philosophy we are taking with us to move forward, and then when we move forward,we adopt that.
With our neighboring countries, we want friendship.
On my swearing-in ceremony, many prime ministers have had their swearing-in ceremonies.
I wasnot the first one.
But this was the first such swearing-in ceremony where all the countryheads were present from the SAARC countries.
I had invited all the SAARC leaders.
And in such a short duration, as soon as Icame in, our neighboring countries I went and met them.
I went to Nepal.
Nobody hadgone to Nepal in seventeen years.
I went to Nepal.
I went to Bhutan.
And I want — I'mreally still busy making friendship with my neighboring countries, and I'm sure that wecan all share our joys and sorrows.
Recently, there was a flood in Jammu and Kashmir,and people had a lot of problems after that.
And the — there was the fact of flood inPakistan, also, and I told it publicly that we are helping in Kashmir.
And on the otherside, across the border, people are facing the ravages of flood.
And on the basis ofhumanity, we would like to help them, also.
With this background only can we live.
Thefriendship should be very deep, and that will be better for us, too.
I have announced thatwe are going to launch a SAARC satellite.
I have already told my scientists that withthe help of that SAARC satellite, we will progress in health, education, weather prediction,forecast.
This SAARC satellite is going to help, free, to all our neighboring countries.
So we havethought about a SAARC satellite.
So we are taking all those initiatives sothat all our SAARC countries can work together and progress.
And the efforts that are takingplace to eradicate poverty we may also be able to contribute towards that.
China is also in our neighborhood.
The entire world believes the 21st century is a centuryof Asia.
Some people believe that this belongs to India.
Some believe that it belongs toChina.
But nobody has a problem in believing who the 21st century belongs to.
Whether itbelongs to India or China is something that people are debating in the world.
But one benefit that comes from India is thatwe have three things that the world does not have.
In no country in the world, no countryhas all these three things together.
One may have one or second or the third, but not all.
One is democracy.
The other is demographic division.
And the third is demand.
And all these three things, we have all thesethree things in the democratic aspect.
As much as U.
can take pride being the biggest– being the oldest democracy, India can take pride in being the biggest democracy, in demography.
We have 1.
25 billion population.
There's so much demand there, and there isno such country which has both the possibilities, and that's why the possibility is there thatIndia will stand with a lot of competence and will work towards the good and the well-beingof the world.
I have said this in the recent years, as well,after I came here, that within one month, I had said that in the month of Septemberitself, I went to Japan, I went — I met the Australian and the Chinese premiers.
Now I'mmeeting the American premier.
I have met a lot of distinguished people in U.
At sucha speed I'm working at the global level, India has started this global attempt.
And I believefirmly that we have to live together in harmony.
We have to work shoulder-to-shoulder witheach other in complete bonhomie.
And even in the midst of problems, difficulties,we have to keep our — we have to engage in conversation, and we have to believe thatthere is coexistence.
If we keep crying about our problems and brooding over it, then wecannot move forward.
We have problems on border with China, but even after that, we have improvedour trade relations, our political relations, our diplomatic relations with China, and itis our effort that the problem — this one problem about which the whole world is worriedand India is worried for the last forty years, is terrorism.
The problem of terrorism, this danger of terrorismneeds to be taken very seriously.
And I have to say it with regret that number of countriesin the world are — have never been able to understand the herculean and the draconianform of terrorism.
I had come in 1993 to State Department, and I was talking about India'sterrorism.
And State Department officials were tellingme that this is your own law and order problem.
I was trying to convince them that this isterrorism, but they were saying, no, this is law and order problem.
They said, you don'tknow how to run a government.
You don't have order.
And I kept trying to convince them — we hadonly fifteen minutes.
We talked for one-and-a-half hours, but I could not convince them.
Andwhen in '93, when I came, they said, why don't you sit together? And then we again sat together.
And this time, they were telling me, what is terrorism.
And they were telling me this because, ontrade center, there had been a big explosion.
That means that unless and until we have abomb explosion, we don't understand what terrorism is.
Because of terrorism, India — the worldis facing a lot of problems.
It's going through a lot of pain.
We have faced this problem for forty years.
And there is no limitation to this problem.
It doesn't follow any country.
It does notknow which country it will go and when.
It's hard to estimate that.
It's such a deformitywhich we cannot ever even imagine.
We cannot even imagine when we see it on TV a journalist'sthroat is being slit.
And we are talking about 21st century humanity.
Such a heinous crimeis being committed in front of us.
It can shake any one of us.
And as long as we don't understand this, wecannot take care of terrorism based on diplomacy only.
Terrorism is an enemy of humanity, andanyone who believes in humanity, they all need to come together.
The borders of the country, the casteism,and the communalism and all these things, we have to get over them, above them, believein humanity, and we all need to come together and unite ourselves.
Only then can we challengethe problem of terrorism.
And for that, to challenge the problem ofterrorism, no matter what the resources, there is only one single way.
And we have to followthis one single way, and the world should understand this, that who all believe in — inhumanity should come join their hands.
We cannot weigh terrorism in different balances,like this is good terrorism or bad terrorism.
If the country that I like has terrorism,I don't care, I should just close my eyes.
And if the country that I don't like has terrorism,then I should do something.
No, that's not how it should be.
There is no such thing as good or bad terrorism.
And if we brand it likegood and bad terrorism, then the terrorists are going to take benefit of that.
Today,the condition of West Asia that we see, they had prosperity in the last three decades ifwe see.
They were so far ahead in their economy, but look at what the situation is now.
And that is why this — these activities ofhumanity's enemies, for that — for the world has to work together in bonhomie, togetherwith each other, and only then can we save humanity, and when humanity walks on those,in their path, we talk about the benefit and welfare of everybody.
We talk about that tradition and that philosophy.
We are those people who had only learned one mantra in the Vedic (inaudible), Vedic era,which is being said in Sanskrit here, and it means that we are the people we want, thateveryone should be prosperous, and physically everybody should be healthy, everyone shouldbe prosperous.
This is the philosophy with which we havegrown.
Not only do we say that people who live in India should be prosperous.
No, that'snot what we believe in.
And that's why we believe and like the prosperity of the world.
And with that ideology, we are moving forward.
I am sure that India will move very fast towardsprogress.
We are trying to encourage tourism.
And I invite each one of you, please comeand visit India.
It's a place to be seen, to be visited.
This is my mantra.
That's why I want that we should all meet each other and weshould see — we should see each other and get to know each other.
And the more we knoweach other, the more we will be benefited.
I got the opportunity to come in between allof you, to meet all you.
I'm very grateful to you.
Thank you very much.
(APPLAUSE) HAASS: Well, I want to begin by thanking theprime minister for those generous comments about this organization, about the Councilon Foreign Relations, the overly generous comments about myself, and I want to thankhim for that extraordinary tour de raison.
I couldn't also help but think that India'srocket may have reached Mars in less time than it took to go crosstown in New York thispast week, but that's a problem here.
Let me begin, sir, with a — with a questionon — begin with the economics, on trade, which as you know is often cited as one ofthe principal locomotives or engines of economic growth.
Yet India, since you became primeminister, decided not to go ahead and ratify the so-called trade facilitation agreement.
And as also India — also India is for themoment outside both APEC and the TPP negotiations.
So could you say something about your viewof trade and whether the domestic politics of India will allow you to pursue a liberaltrade agenda? MODI: (OFF-MIKE) TRANSLATOR: There's no simultaneous translation(OFF-MIKE) HAASS: OK.
MODI: (OFF-MIKE) (UNKNOWN): Can you please translate? Can youplease translate? MODI (through translator):.
and the worldhas no problem with the fact that we have to take a positive stand with food security.
HAASS: Do we have a microphone for this gentlemanhere? Right here.
No, we got one right here, just to sort of get the gist, and then I thinkwe'll have simultaneous from here on.
HAASS: It's on.
MODI (through translator): All right, thankyou.
India is not at all opposed to the trade facilitation agreement of the WTO.
We areabsolutely clear in our mind with regard to our commitment to the WTO agreement on thetrade facilitation.
We also recognize very well that we have to work with the internationalcommunity and the rest of the world on this agreement.
I am personally against following populistpolicies or even populist economic approaches.
But one must recognize that India has a largepopulation of poor people whose requirements of food security, who requirements of foodavailability cannot be ignored.
As a result, I have always maintained — and India hassaid — that the agreement on the food security and the trade facilitation has to go hand-in-handand together.
It cannot be that you do this first and wewill see the other later on.
So we are very much committed to the trade facilitation,but we have to ensure simultaneous progress on the food security front, also.
HAASS: I have one other question I want toraise in the economic realm, which deals with electricity.
As I understand it, several hundredmillion Indians do not have adequate access to electricity.
And the question a lot ofpeople are asking is, how can these people come to enjoy a middle-class life and in theprocess not set in motion economics that have a clearly negative impact on climate change,given the amount of carbon that would be emitted? MODI (through translator): This is right thattoday electricity has become an important part of our lives.
Electricity is no more– no longer a luxury.
It's a requirement of our lives.
And 24/7, we are committed toget 24/7 electricity for everyone.
In our manifesto, we have said it, and wehave said it in our agenda, also, that in the next five years, each village in Indiawill get electricity, power supply, 24/7, and this is possible.
And the way we haveworked in the energy sector, we are emphasizing on clean energy.
For solar, we are bringingthe rooftop policy.
And for that, now there is no possibility that there will be shortageof electricity in India.
As far as climate change is concerned, youwill be very surprised to know, as I said before, that when I was in Gujarat, Al Gorehas written a book Inconvenient Truth.
And I have written a book called Convenient Action.
And I've written it on environment.
And what is possible with the help of political will,environment-friendly work can be done, and how it can be done is what I have proved inthat book.
And that's why development and climate arenot enemies.
If you think so, that's wrong.
We will streamline this carefully and makeit move forward.
HAASS: Sir, India is by many counts the second-largestMuslim country in the world, in terms of population.
Only Indonesia is larger.
And as you know,from your time here, Americans are obviously seized with the challenge posed by the groupISIS.
So one of the questions that's come up iswhether you're worried that the unrest sweeping large parts of the Arab and Muslim worldsmight spread to India.
And to the extent that you are, what are your plans to reduce yourcountry's susceptibility for — to radicalization and even violence? MODI (through translator): As far as Indiais concerned, no matter which community or religion the person belongs to, there is abasic philosophy which drives everyone.
And India's philosophy is — the emblem is Mahatma– Mahatma Gandhi, where we believe in nonviolence.
That's in our very nature.
And you must have seen that there is so muchterrorist activity that took place in our country.
We are so bothered by terrorism.
But inside of all this terrorism, this terrorist activity has been exported to our country.
It's not homegrown.
And that is why the Muslims in India — once CNN had asked me that Al-Qaedais saying such-and-such things and what will happen? And I said, the — Indian Muslimswill fail Al-Qaeda.
HAASS: We hope so.
Let me turn to foreignpolicy for a minute, and then I'll open it up, which is, for much of the Cold War, India'sarticulated foreign policy was one of nonalignment, and there was always the reference to thefive principles of coexistence.
But as you know, and as everybody knows, the world isno longer aligned with the end of the Cold War.
So what is India's compass? What is India'sintellectual approach to this post-Cold War world when it comes to its foreign policy? MODI (through translator): If we go towards18th and the 19th century, the entire era was an era of revolution.
Every ruler which– whatever his parameter was, he wanted to fight for expansion and for — if you lookat the history of two centuries, it's a history of revolution, of fighting, and after that,the history that came is the revolution — is the history of groups, one group versus theother group.
And now the time has changed very rapidly.
The 21st century is not going to run on groups or groupism.
They are irrelevant now.
Eachcountry is interdependent now.
All the countries in the world need each other.
We have alreadyentered an era where each country is dependent on the other.
And now not with the help of groups, but withcoexistence and believing in coexistence we have to move and march forward.
Whether wewant it or we don't want, this has already taken place.
And all the countries, whetherthey are in G20, they will also be in G4.
Those who are in G7 will also be there inG9.
So you can see that there has never been sucha group which in singular.
Everybody is finding place in everywhere.
So the world has changed.
We should not believe in that that we used to believe in old times.
And this is an interdependentworld.
We have to accept that it's an interdependent world.
The world is moving very fast.
We havebeen linked by technology.
Our necessities are — requirements have linked us with eachother.
And we have accepted a new change, and that's why all the old parameters arenot going to be functional anymore.
HAASS: After this meeting here in New York,you're soon heading to Washington.
You'll meet with the president tonight.
You've gotmeetings tomorrow.
I expect one word you're going to hear again and again and again isthe word partnership to describe the U.
So my question for you is whether you arecomfortable with that word and, to the extent that you are or are not, what is your definitionof partnership when it comes to India and the United States? MODI (through translator): First of all, it'snot necessary that we should have comfort in everything.
Even in husband and wife, there'snever 100 percent comfort.
(LAUGHTER) HAASS: We could leave your answer there.
(LAUGHTER) MODI (through translator): But in spite ofthat, for a very long time, there is a binding for a long time.
There are a few things whichconnect India and U.
The biggest thing is democracy, openness.
The openness we see insociety, we see that in the culture of both countries.
And, thirdly, you see in Americathe entire world has come to stay in America.
This is a part of America's character thatit assimilates everybody.
And Indian is settled all over the world.
So India also has the power to assimilate everybody in its country.
So these are thecharacters that link us, that connect us.
The third thing is economic.
You know, it'sthe trade relations.
Sometimes it's in your benefit, sometimes it's in our relation.
It'sa give-and-take formula based on which we work.
But both the countries have a faithin democracy, a respect towards democracy which connects us.
HAASS: We started a few minutes late, so ifit's OK, we'll go on a few minutes.
And one of the traditions at the Council on ForeignRelations — again, you were extraordinarily generous about this organization — is ourmembers get a chance to ask a few questions.
So why don't I turn to them? These questionswill be tougher than the ones from me, so I should warn you.
Ken Juster, I saw you had– if people just wait for the microphone and keep it as short as possible and introducethemselves.
QUESTION: Hi, Ken Juster with the firm WarburgPincus.
I just wanted to follow up on Richard's last question on the partnership between theUnited States and India.
You've described what features we have in common, but do youhave — another word I think you'll hear tomorrow is strategic partnership.
And do you havea vision for that partnership and how the United States and India can work togetheron global issues and regional issues? MODI (through translator): India and U.
Together, it's one thing that we are working in the direction of finding peace.
But oneconomic development, we are going to be talking about when we meet the research that takesplace here, on that research, how it can be used.
Maybe it can be used with the othercountries, like India, and maybe there is more possibility of bringing it on Earth,there is more utility there, and we can work on that, as well.
And how we look at the world, our perspectivetowards the world, not based on the utilization alone.
I still believe that the U.
and Indiarelation and India's relations for the benefit of U.
relations for its own, insteadof doing that, we should believe how we can work together for each other's benefit.
Andif we can work like that, then our strength can be very beneficial for the whole world.
And today, when I met Mr.
Kerry, I explained that to Mr.
Kerry in great length.
HAASS: Is Afghanistan one of the areas youthink we can work on together in a productive way? Is Afghanistan one of the challengeswe can work on? MODI (through translator): Afghanistan isa very big example.
It's actually an example.
A lot of people from India live in Afghanistan,and in a way, with India and Afghanistan partnership, it has — Afghanistan has played a very bigrole.
And even we want that Afghanistan should be stable and democratic way.
It should marchtowards its voyage of development.
And the security measures with which Americahas helped, there has been stability created there.
And our efforts have been — even todayin the new government that has come up there after the elections, we are trying to coordinatebetween the government and the people.
And India and U.
have worked and tried to createthat there.
And Afghanistan has marched towards a goodresult.
But we have requested to America that the defense withdrawal subject, please donot repeat the mistake that you did in Iraq, because after such a rapid withdrawal in Iraq,what happened there, you know, so the withdrawal process in Afghanistan should be very slow,let it stand on its own, and only then it can stop from Taliban emerging its head there.
That's why India and U.
have worked together to bring prosperity in Afghanistan.
HAASS: Professor Cohen, who's one of thiscountry's leading China experts.
Prime Minister, you set an admirableexample for the world in June when you accepted the arbitration decision of a law of the seatribunal, even though it awarded most of the Bay of Bengal that was in dispute to Bangladesh.
Would you be willing to submit your land border problems with China to arbitration or adjudication?The Chinese government has thus far rejected the use of arbitration or adjudication.
ThePhilippines is now putting China to the test.
Would India be willing to do something similar? MODI (through translator): China and India,both are competent to find a solution with a dialogue.
China and India are in directtalks, and that is why there is no need for a separate arbitration.
And I have had verygood relations with China personally.
China president was here, met with me, and I believethat there is border dispute, yes.
And in several things, on several subjects, we havetalked about and we will take it forward, but we both believe that we can come togetherand find a solution.
That's why we do not need an arbitration.
HAASS: Yes, ma'am? QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) HAASS: It's on.
QUESTION: It's on, hi.
I'm Terra Lawson-Remer,formerly a fellow here the Council and now legal and campaign director with Avaaz, aglobal civic organization with over 38 million members worldwide.
You've often said there'sno compromise on the dignity of women.
So given the enormous potential of Indian womenand the challenges they face every day, what is your vision for a made in India approachto ending gender-based violence and inequality? Is your government exploring the establishmentof a prime ministerial task force or any other concrete milestones to be a global leaderon this issue that's so fundamental to the lives of so many? HAASS: This may also be a good moment to introduceboth your foreign minister and your foreign secretary.
(LAUGHTER) MODI (through translator): I'm grateful toyou that the initiative that I have taken, you have talked about it.
There are many partsof the world where the chief cannot become — cannot be a woman.
There are many places– many countries where a woman cannot become a president or prime minister.
But India and Asian countries have had womenprime ministers and heads of (inaudible).
My foreign minister is a woman, Ms.
She's sitting here.
My foreign secretary is also a woman, Sujatha Singh.
And in my cabinet,25 percent are women.
They are the cabinet ministers.
But this is not all.
For women empowerment,the first and foremost thing is girl child education.
We are dedicated for girl childeducation, and I would like to share my experience in Gujarat.
When I was the chief ministerin Gujarat, when I came to understand about girl child education, when I was the first-time– when I first time became the chief minister, it was very painful for me that this situationof girl child education was such that the schools start in — on 15th June, and thetemperature there at that time is 45 degree.
Here at 24 degree, you feel hot, and we wereliving in 45 degree.
So on June 13th, 14th and 15th, I would goto the villages myself, and all my cabinet ministers will go with me.
All my membersof legislative assembly will go with me.
And I would beg people at each door.
And I wouldtell them that in your — when I beg you, please, give me a promise that you will educateyour daughters, and I would take those girls to school myself, and I was successful inhaving 100 percent enrollment.
This was 100 percent enrollment in which I was successful.
I did not get stuck there.
Wherever I went,a public function, people would give me a gift.
And I would auction that gift.
So whenI came out of Gujarat, in that auction, I got 78 crore rupees.
And I used that amountas a gift to the government for girl child education.
So this is my government's agenda.
Educateyour daughter and save your daughter.
And we are working in that direction.
There aremany countries in the world where in order to get voting, women have — have had to gothrough a lot of revolution.
Even developed countries, women had to fight for gettingvoter rights.
But in India, women have 30 percent reservation in election, no matterwhich body it is.
It is compulsory to have 30 percent women.
This is the kind of forward-lookingcountry that we are.
HAASS: Farooq Kathwari? QUESTION: I'm Farooq Kathwari, CEO of EthanAllen and originally born in (inaudible) Kashmir.
You mentioned about the Jammu and Kashmirfloods.
So our families, of course, have been tremendously and greatly affected.
So my questionand clear request is that the government of India should allow international organizationsto come in.
There's a tremendous amount of bureaucracy in allowing international organizationsto help.
MODI (through translator): First of all, manycountries in the world have sent assistance to Kashmir.
When there was an earthquake inGujarat, we also had received a lot of assistance, and it's a very good thing in the entire world,that if there is a natural calamity anywhere, all the countries send help.
When there wasan earthquake in Pakistan, I was the first one, because I was in Gujarat and in the neighborhood,and we had sent the help to Pakistan.
This is something that humanity has to do.
HAASS: I have a quick last question, becauseI know we're behind schedule, which is, as you come into this job, you've now been therefor four months.
Is there another leader, whether India or in another country, who yousay that's someone who set a model that I would like to follow in my position as primeminister? MODI (through translator): If I say that,then that will be an injustice to a lot of people, because there are so many people andI have learned so much from everybody.
If I give you one name, fifty other people willbe upset.
So that's why all the experienced people that are there, I have to learn somethingfrom everybody.
And after learning from everybody, you have to do go for my country.
So who isthe best, I have to bring that in my country.
Prime Minister, I learned somethingfrom you in how not to answer a question just now.
(LAUGHTER) Thank you very much.