Index

DATE=3/6/2000 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=INDIA / CLINTON (L ONLY) NUMBER=2-259868 BYLINE=ANJANA PASRICHA DATELINE=NEW DELHI CONTENT= VOICED AT: Intro: Senior American officials in New Delhi say President Clinton's upcoming visit to India will focus on developing what they call "an enhanced relationship" between the two countries. From New Delhi, Anjana Pasricha has details. Text: The U-S ambassador to India, Richard Celeste, describes President Clinton's visit to India later this month as the "long overdue engagement" of an American President with India. Ambassador Celeste says issues of nuclear non- proliferation in South Asia and the hostile relations between India and Pakistan will be discussed during the visit. But he says the challenge is to take the relationship beyond these two issues that have troubled Indo-U-S relations for decades. /// CELESTE ACT /// The purpose of the visit is to broaden our engagement, to underscore the range of interests we share, and to move forward wherever we can, and I suspect there is some feeling that as we do that it can help create space for constructive activity in these other areas over time. /// END CELESTE ACT /// Indian officials, in their comments on President Clinton's visit, have also expressed the hope that Kashmir and nuclear non-proliferation will not dominate the visit. The United States has been urging India and Pakistan to hold talks to solve their dispute over Kashmir. On nuclear issues, it wants New Delhi to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. Political analysts in New Delhi say India will be unhappy if President Clinton visits Pakistan. On the other hand, Islamabad will be upset at being left out of the tour. Although Washington has not committed so far to a visit to Pakistan, Ambassador Celeste said a decision on whether the president will visit there is likely to be taken soon. U-S officials have made clear that they want Islamabad's rulers to restore democratic government and to crack down on terrorism. In addition to New Delhi, President Clinton will visit India's commercial capital, Mumbai, and the high- technology city of Hyderabad. The trip will also include stopovers at the popular tourist cities of Agra and Jaipur. Ambassador Celeste says the president is likely to be accompanied by as many as six cabinet ministers, including Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. (Signed) NEB/AP 06-Mar-2000 08:42 AM EDT (06-Mar-2000 1342 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .