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Modi-Xi meet: Wuhan spirit to Chennai connect

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11 Tibetans Detained For Protesting Against Xi Jinping In Chennai Police

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Saturday that his summit with Chinese leader Xi Xinping would launch a "new era" between the neighbours who are seeking to overcome troublesome differences.

Building on the "Wuhan spirit", the Prime Minister spoke of "Chennai connect" for a new era of cooperation between India and China, as Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said that a new mechanism will be set up for issues relating to trade and investment.

"India-China relations are not predicated to a single issue", Gokhale said, adding that the latest developments in Kashmir were an internal matter of India.

The two leaders have agreed that both countries should work together to deal with the challenge of terrorism, he added.

Both the leaders have made a decision to establish a High-Level Economic and Trade Dialogue mechanism to better balance trade between the two countries.

Part of Beijing's Belt and Road infrastructure mega-programme is planned in Pakistan-administered Kashmir, and Xi held talks with Prime Minister Imran Khan in Beijing just two days before meeting Modi.

The Chinese President had landed in Chennai on Friday and held a one-on-one discussion with Modi on various issues in the coastal historic city of Mamallapuram. He said both the countries are now regaining the prominent position.

Third, the two countries should effectively improve military and security exchanges and cooperation, Xi urged. He said both the countries should enrich cultural and people-to-people exchanges and cement the foundation of friendship.

Indian generic drugmakers have long sought greater market access to China, as have India's IT services. "Dragon and the elephant dance is the only correct choice for China and India, which is in the fundamental interests of both countries and their people", he said, without specifying differences between the two countries. The tete-a-tete was followed by delegation-level discussions.

Besides emphasizing the expansion of trade and investment, Modi and Xi resolved to work together in facing the challenges of radicalization and terrorism, Gokhale said.

They concluded the summit with delegation-level talks between India and China.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (right) and Chinese President Xi Jinping visit the Vaan Irai Kal in Mamallapuram on Friday.

Modi released a short video on Twitter showing him walking barefoot in the sand, collecting the trash in a bag on Saturday morning in Mamallapuram in Tamil Nadu state.

Xi commended Modi for taking the initiative to hold these kinds of summits, saying it was a "good idea". It was decided that public of both countries must be brought in the relationship. "Today, our Chennai vision will begin a new age in relations between our two countries".

The two had been embroiled in a trade war with increasing sanctions and trade barriers being placed after Washington were left furious with Beijing stealing western trade secrets and hacking businesses.

Huawei's "contribution to India's economic and social development is obvious to all", China's foreign ministry said this week, calling on India to make "independent and objective judgments and decisions". PM Modi felt greater emphasis must be laid on tourism.

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