Cameron’s ’secret weapon’ SamCam to miss India visit

By Manish Chand, IANS
Friday, July 9, 2010

NEW DELHI - When British Prime Minister David Cameron comes here to forge a “special partnership” with India this month, he will miss a very special person - his India-loving, glamorous wife Samantha. “SamCam” will not be visiting as she is six months pregnant.

“Samantha Cameron was very keen to come to India, but she won’t be coming as she is expecting a baby in September,” a British diplomat, who did not wish to be named, told IANS.

“The Camerons are very thrilled at the news and don’t want to take any chances with the baby on the way,” said the diplomat.

Samantha, 39, dubbed “SamCam” for her photogenic looks, recently stepped down as creative director of Smythson luxury goods, which also designs notebooks for the Queen. She now plans to work two days a week as consultant for the firm.

Cameron fondly called her my “secret weapon” when she joined his campaign, injecting a dose of glamour and style in an otherwise staid election.

This will be their fourth baby. It’s not the first time babies will be born in 10, Downing Street. Samantha’s predecessors, Sarah Brown and Cherie Blair, had babies while living there.

Samantha, who practices yoga and sports an ankle tattoo, perhaps the only British First Lady to do do, imbibed her love for India from her mother Annabel, who spent a year in India in the 1960s during her gap year in college and launched a jewellery business soon after.

Even now, her mother is said to source materials for her 30 million-pound home furnishings company from India.

Cameron is expected to come on his rime ministerial visit to India July 28-29, his first since stepping inside Downing Street.

He will be accompanied by his senior ministers, including Foreign Secretary William Hague, Chancellor of Exchequer George Osborne and Business Secretary Vince Cable and top business honchos who are eying a piece of the burgeoning Indian economy which, according to the IMF, is expected to grow 9.5 percent.

The 43-year-old Cameron identified developing a special relationship with India as his foreign policy priority even when he was a Tory leader and visited New Delhi in 2006.

Days after he became prime minister, Cameron assigned to himself the charge of dealing with India and developing an “enhanced partnership” it.

The focus will be on launching a new phase in the India-British partnership, revolving around all-round accelerated business ties and exploring new areas like banking, insurance, financial and professional services sectors, said the sources.

Filed under: Diplomacy

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