Index

DATE=9/15/2000 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=INDIA - VAJPAYEE REACT (L-ONLY)CQ NUMBER=2-266549 BYLINE=JIM TEEPLE DATELINE=NEW DELHI CONTENT= VOICED AT: //Editors - Because of line problems, Jim Teeple in New Delhi was unable to voice this CR or send the actualities. He will try again on Saturday, 9/16, to voice and send acts.// INTRO: The visit of India's Prime Minister to the United States is being well received back home. India's newspapers, its state-run radio network and its several new 24-hour cable TV news channels have all devoted considerable space and time to the visit. V-O-A's Jim Teeple spent part of Friday on a busy corner in downtown New Delhi speaking to Delhites about what they think of their Prime Minister's trip to the United States. TEXT: // ACTUALITY OF TRAFFIC...EST.AND FADE UNDER TEXT // TEXT: There is no busier place in New Delhi than Connaught Place - where Delhites have come to shop and be entertained for 75-years. It is a good place to take the pulse of this city of more than 13-million because everyone comes to Connaught Place - rich and poor alike. Taking a break from his job in one of the shops that line the circle is Sanjay Mehra who says he has been paying close attention to Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee's Washington trip. Mr. Mehra says he especially enjoyed watching Mr. Vajpayee's address to a joint session of the U-S Congress. He says he liked what he heard when Mr. Vajpayee - without mentioning Pakistan by name -- said foreign-sponsored terrorists want to destroy India's territorial integrity. // MEHRA ACTUALITY // I think it is good to go after terrorism globally. They have to control terrorism which is covering the whole world. So it was good that Prime Minister Vajpayee said something about terrorism and it is good to have a friendship with the U-S. // END ACTUALITY // // OPT // Shopping at Connaught Place Friday afternoon - Vinuta Murthy says Indians know more about America than Americans do about India. She says she hopes Mr. Vajpayee's trip will help change that. // OPTIONAL MURTHY ACTUALITY // I think it is a good idea and I think he is doing a good job of it and I am glad that the United States and India are friends because I enjoy going to the States, I have a lot of friends and relatives there and I think it is nice that we are looked at as a country that is coming up. // END OPTIONAL ACTUALITY // // END OPT // Just a short distance from Connaught Place is New Delhi's Institute for Defense Studies and Analysis - a leading capital think tank. Commodore Uday Bhaskar is the Deputy Director of the Institute. He says Mr. Vajpayee's visit is being closely followed by India's well-educated middle classes. // BHASKAR ACTUALITY // There are many issues there - political, military and social that are of great relevance to India. Perhaps if you talk about one-billion Indians maybe half of them are not aware of the visit but I think for the discerning lot that do track such issues, the Vajpayee visit to the United States is an important visit because it will help sensitize global opinion to many of the issues that India is now dealing with - starting with globalization to terrorism. It is really a case of India having to deal with the two IT's - information technology on the one hand and international terrorism on the other. // END BHASKAR ACTUALITY // Not everyone in New Delhi is a fan of Mr. Vajpayee's trip. Taking a cigarette break from his office at India Today, a leading Indian news weekly headquartered on Connaught Place, cartoonist Ajit Ninan Matthew says he considers the Prime Minister's trip a waste of time. // NINAN MATTHEW ACTUALITY // He is going at the wrong time, there is an election campaign going on there, and for Americans it is once in four years - so the whole media is watching the Gore and Bush campaign. Also nothing got resolved from the Strobe Talbot talks, nothing got resolved from the Clinton visit here - Clinton did not give us any gifts, and neither is he going to now, because he is a lame duck president. So it is one of those send-offs or see you - goodbye type of trips - nothing more than that. // END ACTUALITY // Indian newspapers are giving extensive coverage to Mr. Vajpayee's trip but there was far more coverage of Thursday's whirlwind visit to New Delhi by Bill Gates, the Chairman of Microsoft, who announced an alliance with India's Infosys Technologies Corporation - one of the new Information Technology companies operating out of the southern city of Bangalore. For young Indians like Sanjay -- who asked that his last name not be used --- because he was sitting outside the Connaught Place headquarters of his American company -- Bill Gates visiting India is more interesting than Atal Behari Vajpayee visiting the United States. // SANJAY ACTUALITY /// I think things are happening with Bill Gates and India - you know there is the alliance between Infosys and Microsoft -- which is I think is a big step for India's information technology which has been driving our economy for the last year and a half or so. So that is pretty big news and it is certainly relevant as far as India is concerned. // END ACTUALITY // While he says he is not paying much attention to Mr. Vajpayee's visit, Sanjay says he welcomes the trip. Like many other educated middle class Indians, Sanjay says he knows far more about the United States than someone his age in the United States knows about India. He says if Mr. Vajpayee's trip raises more awareness in the United States about India the trip will have been well worth it. (Signed) neb/jlt/plm 15-Sep-2000 10:30 AM EDT (15-Sep-2000 1430 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .