Delayed Modi-Putin meet reflects colder Russian face to India

16 July 2014

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's trip to Brazil for the BRICS summit has not been as smooth and easy as officially-informed media reports suggest.

En route to Fortazela, India's PM landed at Berlin, reportedly in hopes of meeting Chancellor Angela Merkel. But Merkel herself was already in Brazil, watching her country lift the football World Cup.

According to a report in The Telegraph, Modi's meeting with Chinese president Xi Jinping on Monday evening was to have been followed immediately by a meeting with Putin; but the Russian President was not yet in Fortaleza at the scheduled hour, his own meeting with Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff in Brasilia, 1,600 km away, having lasted two hours longer than expected..

The report said, "Sections in India's foreign policy establishment are wondering whether the avoidable delay in Putin's landing in Fortaleza - where he knew the Indian Prime Minister was waiting for him - represents a signal from Moscow that New Delhi needs to decipher."

Reportedly, the two leaders weresupposed to discuss a multi-million dollar hydrocarbons pipeline from Russia to India, but there is no indication that the topic came up in their discussion.

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