On Friday, August 25, the Business and Trade Secretary of the United Kingdom, Kemi Badenoch, condemned the attack on the Indian High Commission in London in March. Badenoch called the attack by the Khalistani terrorists a “disgrace” adding that the British government is committed to ensuring that people feel safe there. She said this in response to Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal’s comment that, despite the UK’s large Indian population, the Indian High Commission felt unsafe.
While speaking at the meeting of G20 trade and investment ministers in Jaipur, Rajasthan, Kemi Badenoch said, “In any country no matter how much of a global superpower there will always be problems and in the UK one of the most interesting things, and I say this as one of the immigrants to the country, is that quite a lot of the times people don’t integrate the way we want them to and they bring problems and the same negative attitudes and the same issues from wherever they come from and bring it to the UK.”
It is pertinent to recall that on 19th March 2023, pro-Khalistani elements had barged into the Indian High Commission in London and they had removed the tricolour from the premises. Amidst chants of ‘Khalistan Zindabad’, a man was seen scaling the walls of the building and pulling down the Indian flag. He then waved the Khalistani flag jubilantly while Indian officials at the building seized the tricolour from the man.
With regard to the talks pertaining to a free trade agreement between India and the UK, Minister Goyal said on Friday that the negotiations are in progress and the talks will conclude as soon as possible. UK trade secretary Badenoch on Thursday said that India and the United Kingdom are actively discussing commercial mobility under the proposed free trade agreement (FTA), with negotiations nearing conclusion.