Li seeks to impress with 'namaste'

May 22, 2013, 00:39 IST | Agencies

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang elicited smiles and applause from his audience last morning with his informal and friendly manner, not the least by beginning his address with a "namaste".

Addressing an audience of diplomats, China experts, students and business honchos at the Taj Palace Hotel here, Li said he remembered the Indian form of greeting from his memorable visit to India 27 years ago.

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang was candid in his address to Indian businessmen yesterday. Pic/AFP

He said he was happy he had got the opportunity to use the Hindi word once again and asked the audience “I hope I have pronounced it properly” - which had everyone laughing and clapping.

Li said he had “deep respect for the people of India” and had “candid and friendly talks” with PM Manmohan Singh on a wide range of issues, and both sides were “satisfied” with the talks.

Li had the audience laughing when he said he had “checked the headlines” in the morning and found the media, including international, had “spoken positively of the visit.”

Touching meet
Keeping alive the traditions of past Chinese leaders, Li yesterday had an emotional audience with Manorama Kotnis, the 92-year-old sister of medico Dwarkanath Kotnis, considered the symbol of India-China friendship. Li informed the family that China still remembers Dwarkanath and his help to his countrymen during the crisis following the Japanese aggression during 1937-45.

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