‘I am happy that my first foreign visit after the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic will be to our friendly neighbouring country’
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said his Bangladesh visit will be an occasion to convey appreciation for Bangladesh’s remarkable economic and developmental strides under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visionary leadership.
His visit will also be an occasion to commit India’s abiding support for these achievements.
“My visit will not only be an occasion to convey appreciation for Bangladesh’s remarkable economic and developmental strides under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visionary leadership, but also to commit India’s abiding support for these achievements,” Modi said, adding that he will also express India’s support and solidarity for Bangladesh’s fight against Covid-19.
In a pre-departure statement, Modi said he will be having “substantive discussions” with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, following their very productive virtual meeting in December last year.
Modi is scheduled to arrive here on Friday morning on a two-day state visit at the invitation of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
“I am happy that my first foreign visit after the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic will be to our friendly neighbouring country, with which India shares deep cultural, linguistic and people-to-people ties,” he said.
The Indian prime minister said he looks forward to his participation at the Independence Day celebrations on Friday, which will also commemorate the birth centenary of the Father of the Nation of Bangladesh, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
“Bangabandhu was one of the tallest leaders of the last century, whose life and ideals continue to inspire millions,” he said.
Modi said he looks forward to visiting Bangabandhu’s tomb in Tungipara to pay respects to his memory.
He will be offering prayers to goddess Kali at the ancient Jeshoreshwari Kali Temple, one of the 51 Shakti Peethas in the Puranic tradition, according to the Press Information Bureau of India.
“I am particularly looking forward to my interaction with representatives of the Matua community at Orakandi, from where Sri Sri Harichandra Thakur ji disseminated his pious message,” Modi said.
He will meet President Abdul Hamid and have interactions with other Bangladeshi dignitaries as well.
The Indian prime minister said Bangabandhu’s vision continues to light the Bangladesh-India friendship. “I had the privilege of honouring his memory during my previous Bangladesh visit.”
Modi said he will again pay homage to Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, alongside Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, during the ongoing Mujib Borsho celebrations.
Earlier, he said Bangabandhu was a champion of human rights and freedom, and is a hero to Indians as well.
He also said the legacy and inspiration of Bangabandhu has made the heritage of both countries more comprehensive and deep-rooted, and that the path shown by Bangabandhu has laid a strong foundation for the partnership, progress and prosperity of both countries over the last decade.