Manmohan Singh

December 2010
Background Information Summaries;12/10/2010, p6
Manmohan Singh, a renowned academic economist and former Indian finance minister credited with jump-starting India's economy in the early 1990s, first became prime minister in 2004 and began a second term after elections in 2009. He was the first Sikh to head the government in Hindu-dominated India. Although Singh is widely credited with India's emergence as a fast-growing economic power in Asia, he was also responsible for negotiating an agreement with the United States that recognized India's role as a nuclear power, ending decades of isolation on this issue due to Delhi's refusal to honor the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. Singh was also credited by former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf for improving relations with Pakistan--relations since strained by a terrorist attack on Mumbai, India, in 2008 by the Pakistani group Lashkar-e-Toiba, which reputedly receives support from Pakistan's ISI intelligence agency. Singh was the guest of honor at President Barack Obama's first state dinner in 2009, a symbol of the growing importance of the U.S. relationship with India as a counterweight to the emergence of China in the region.


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