Modi 3.0 to showcase “Neighbours First” mantra

India’s “Neighbourhood First” mantra will resonate when Prime Minister Narendra Modi is sworn in for a third term in the presence of the leaders of Sri Lanka, Nepal, Mauritius and the Maldives.

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Sri Lanka’s President Ranil Wickremesinghe Nepal PM Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Bhutan’s King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, Vice-President of Seychelles Ahmed Afif, and Mauritius PM Pravind Jugnauth will be in attendance at the swearing-in ceremony of PM Modi at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on June 9. This means all SAARC countries have been invited barring Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Inviting foreign dignitaries, especially from neighbouring countries, to his swearing-in ceremonies has become a hallmark of PM Modi’s diplomatic outreach.

“The presence of the leaders of South Asian countries at the swearing-in ceremony will send a clear message about the continuing importance of the neighbourhood in Modi’s diplomatic and foreign policy calculus. It’s now for neighbours to reciprocate by prioritising relations with India,” said Manish Chand, CEO, Centre for Global India Insights, a think tank focused on global affairs.

In 2014, Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai, Sri Lanka’s Mahinda Rajapaksa, the Maldives’ Abdullah Yameen Abdul Gayoom, Nepal’s Prime Minister Sushil Koirala, Bhutan’s Tshering Tobgay, and Bangladesh parliament speaker Shirin Sharmin, representing Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, attended the first swearing-in of PM Modi in May 2014.

In 2019,  the leaders of the BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) grouping to be invited to the national capital for PM Modi’s second swearing-in ceremony. It is a body of seven South Asian and South-East Asian countries for freer trade among member nations. Myanmar and Thailand join the SAARC members India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bhutan to make up the BIMSTEC.

Bangladesh President Abdul Hamid (representing PM Sheikh Hasina), Bhutan PM Tshering Tobgay, Nepal PM KP Sharma Oli, Sri Lanka President Maithripala Sirisena, Myanmar President Wyn Myint and Thailand’s special envoy Grisada Boonrach attended the swearing-in ceremony from BIMSTEC nations. Others who attended PM Modi’s swearing-in included Kyrgyzstan President Sooronbey Jeenbekov and Mauritian PM Pravind Jugnauth.


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India Writes Network
India Writes Network
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