MPs question UK’s financial aid commitment to India


Philip Davies MP
Philip Davies MP

A number of Conservative party MPs on Monday (4) questioned the UK government’s financial assistance programme for India, which will involve £52 million for 2018-19 and £46 million for 2019-20. A few weeks after the government’s Department for International Development (DfID) released its ‘India Profile’ for the coming years in July, Tory MP David Davies said India did not “want or need” UK aid and that “in effect we are sponsoring an Indian moon launch”. In reference to India’s £95.4 million “splurge” on lunar probe Chandrayaan-2, which is expected to launch later this year, other Tory MPs also attacked the financial assistance ear-marked for India. “Here we are spending money in a country that has not only got its own space programme but is developing its own overseas aid programme. To be honest, the government needs looking at if it thinks that is an appropriate way of spending taxpayers’ money,” Tory MP Philip Davies told Daily Express. “It needs to get out of Whitehall and appreciate the public is not just sick and tired of this but angry too. It is completely unjustifiable and truly idiotic,” Davies added. However, DfID stressed that none of the financial assistance marked for India was intended for its space programme. “DFID ended traditional aid to India in 2015. The UK now provides the country with world-leading expertise and private investment which boost prosperity, create jobs and open up markets, while generating a return for the UK at the same time,” a spokesperson said. “This is firmly in our interests. Not a penny of British taxpayers’ aid money has gone on India’s space programme,” the spokesperson said. In its ‘India Profile’ assessment, DfID notes that it works in partnership with the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Department for International Trade and the UK Treasury…

You do not have access to this content. You need to create an account.