US envoy sees potential to boost US-India defence ties, Consular capabilities

Our Bureau Hyderabad | Updated on March 10, 2020

US Ambassador to India Kenneth I. Juster (File photo)   -  PTI

Visits Tata-Lockheed Martin Aero structures facility, New Consulate Compound in Hyderabad

US Ambassador to India, Kenneth I Juster, sees potential to advance India-US defence engagements and strategic partnerships.

During his visit to Hyderabad, he toured the Tata-Lockheed Martin Aerostructures facility, which stands as a testament to the strong relationship between the defence industries of the US and India.

Ambassador Juster’s visit to the 4,700-sq m facility marks the 10-year anniversary of this partnership and highlights the importance of the growing defence ties between the two nations.

The jointly-owned facility in Adibatla manufactures airframe components, including centre wing boxes and tail sections for the C-130J military transport aircraft.

Tata-Lockheed plans to expand the partnership to produce aircraft in India, which would advance the capabilities of the Indian Air Force and boost US-India cooperation in high-end technologies.

New Consulate Compound

The Ambassador attended the “Topping Out” ceremony of the New Consulate Compound in Hyderabad and celebrated the completion of all major structural components at the new compound.

The Consulate General Hyderabad officially engages communities, companies, and institutions across the States of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, and Odisha.

Spread across more than 12 acres, the facility will feature 54 consular interview windows as well as artfully preserved Deccan rock formations.

Aid for cultural conservation

The Ambassador also announced the completion of a US-funded restoration project at the 17th century Qutb Shahi Tombs through the Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP).

In February 2019, Ambassador Juster announced a $103,000 grant through the AFCP, partnering with the Aga Khan Foundation to restore the centuries-old tombs of Taramati and Premamati within the greater Qutb Shahi Tombs complex. This is the second grant awarded by the US Government for conservation work at the Qutb Shahi Tombs.

An earlier AFCP grant of $101,000, awarded in 2014, contributed to mapping and documenting structures throughout the site and helped deepen archaeologists’ understanding of the monument’s earliest architecture.

Ambassador Juster said, “I’m pleased to see progress at the new US Consulate Compound in Hyderabad.” The Ambassador added, “From the success of the US-India defence partnership, as exemplified by a decade of cooperation between Lockheed Martin and Tata, to the restoration of the historic tombs of Taramati and Premamati, US-India ties are clearly thriving in Hyderabad.”

Published on March 10, 2020

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