Narendra Modi: Historical, cultural traditions have created deep bonds between India, Bhutan

Published: Aug 18, 2019, 11:54 IST | mid-day online correspondent

Narendra Modi said that India is home to one of the biggest start-up eco-systems in the world and invited the students to launch their start-ups in the country

Narendra Modi: Historical, cultural traditions have created deep bonds between India, Bhutan
Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Pic/Twitter/PM Bhutan

Bhutan: Prime Minister Narendra Modi stressed that cultural, historical and spiritual traditions have created unique and deep bonds between India and Bhutan and added it is natural that the people of both countries experience great attachment to each other on Sunday. "It is natural that the people of Bhutan and India experience great attachment to each other. After all, we are close not just due to our geography. Our history, culture and spiritual traditions have created unique and deep bonds between our peoples and nations," Narendra Modi stated while addressing Bhutanese students and parliamentarians at the Royal University of Bhutan.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited the students to launch their start-ups in the country and stated that India as a country is home to one of the biggest start-up eco-systems in the world. "It is a matter of great happiness that young Bhutanese scientists will travel to India to work on designing and launching Bhutan's own small satellite. I hope that someday soon, many of you will be scientists, engineers and innovators," the Prime Minister added.

"As Bhutan soars high in its endeavours, your 1.3 billion Indian friends will not just look on and cheer you with pride and happiness. They will partner with you, share with you and learn from you," he said. Highlighting the initiatives taken up by his government, Narendra Modi stated that infrastructural development has doubled in the last five years in India. "Today, India is witnessing historic transformations in a wide range of sectors. India is eliminating poverty faster than ever before. India is home to the world's largest healthcare scheme, Ayushman Bharat, which offers health assurance to 500 million Indians. India has among the cheapest data connectivity in the world, which is, directly and indirectly, empowering millions," the Prime Minister said. Narendra Modi said that India is seeking to cooperate with Bhutan in sectors beyond the traditional ones like hydropower.

"Going beyond the traditional sectors of cooperation, we are seeking to cooperate extensively in new frontiers, from schools to space, digital payments to disaster management," he said. The Prime Minister underlined that the inauguration of the ISRO-built Ground Station for South Asian Satellite in Thimphu has boosted space cooperation between both countries. "Through satellites, benefits of telemedicine, distance education, resource mapping, weather forecast and even warning of natural disasters can reach even remote areas," he said. "This very spirit radiated from the adorable children who lined the streets to welcome me yesterday. I will always remember their smiles," Narendra Modi added recalling the waving of Indian and Bhutanese national flags by school children to welcome him in Bhutan.

All 47 MPs from Bhutan's lower house of the parliament (National Assembly of Bhutan) were invited for the address, along with the 25 MPs in the Bhutanese Parliament's upper house (National Council of Bhutan). Over 200 students were present at the event. Following the address, Narendra Modi visited the National Memorial Chorten, where he offered 'khaddar' and lit butter lamps. He arrived in Bhutan for an official two-day visit on Saturday which aimed at further enhancing India's relations with its Himalayan neighbour. The main highlights of the visit were the inauguration of the 720 megawatts (MW) Mangdechhu hydroelectric power project, along with the remote launching of ISRO's Ground Earth Station.

With inputs from ANI

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