The Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee in his meeting with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton discussed the US decision to hike H-1B visa fees, arguing that protectionism would not strengthen the relationship between the two countries.
Mukherjee and Clinton in their 30-minutes meeting at the Foggy Bottom headquarters of the State Department discussed Indian reservations about some US policy developments.
"Protectionism would not help," Mukherjee said, arguing for free flow of trade and money, which he said would benefit everyone.
Early this week, India rebutted a media report that Washington has linked the UN Security Council permanent seat to the resolution of the Kashmir issue.
On Wednesday, a report said that Obama would be carrying the message on his visit to India in November that settling the Kashmir issue is the key to get a permanent seat at the powerful wing of the world body.
Dismissing such reports, official sources said that India was eminently qualified to become a UNSC permanent member and there was no possible link with the Kashmir issue.
"There cannot be any possible links. These are very different issues," Indian official sources said, dismissing the reports as speculative.
In New York, Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao recently said that while the US is not fully sold on the idea of India becoming a permanent member of the UN Security Council, there has been positive movement in that direction.
"I'm not saying we have reached the destination of full American support for our case but certainly we are moving from divergence to greater convergence," she had said.