The Paris climate agreement is a shared legacy of the world and it will benefit the future generations, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Saturday, vowing to go “above and beyond” the accord to combat climate change.
Two days after President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the historic pact, Modi met French President Emmanuel Macron on Saturday and discussed issues of international and mutual interests, including ways to enhance strategic ties, countering terrorism and climate change.
“Paris Agreement reflects our duty towards protecting the Earth and our natural resources. For us, this is an article of faith,” the official Twitter account of the Prime Minister’s Office quoted Modi as saying.
Trump’s decision to dump the accord has provoked anger and condemnation from world leaders and heads of industry. It has also come at an awkward moment as Modi is set to make an official visit to the US later this month. Trump has said the pact is bad for his country and unfairly advantaged India and China.
Speaking at an economic forum in St Petersburg in Russia, Modi said on Friday India is committed to the Paris accord irrespective of the course chosen by other countries. Replying to a question, he quoted the Vedas to say harming the environment is a crime and milking nature is the right of the humans.
“We have natural resources because our previous generations protected these resources. We must do the same for our future,” he said in Paris.
Talking about the India-France relationship, Modi said the two countries “enjoy deep-rooted ties”. “Our nations have been working together for a very long time, bilaterally and multilaterally.”
Modi said the two countries will make efforts to improve cultural relations.
“We want to improve cultural relations between India and France. Several Indians fought in the first two world wars for world peace,” he said.
Modi arrived in France from Russia, where he held talks with President Vladimir Putin and attended an international economic forum. Before Russia, Modi also visited Germany and Spain and held talks with the top leadership there.