Maldives will confer ‘Nishan Izzuddin’ award on Prime Minister Narendra Modi. It is the highest award to honour foreign nationals.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will arrive in Male this evening on the first leg of his two-nation tour to the Maldives and Sri Lanka. The Maldivian Government will be giving a ceremonial welcome to Mr Modi. This will also be the first bilateral visit to the Maldives of an Indian Prime Minister after 2011.
The Prime Minister will have bilateral discussions with President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, hold meetings with Vice President Faisal Naseem and Speaker of Majlis and former President Mohamed Nasheed during his visit. He will also address the legislative body of the island nation called the People’s Majlis today. Several key agreements and MoUs are expected to be signed during the visit of Prime Minister Modi.
Along with President Solih, Prime Minister Modi is likely to inaugurate the Coastal Surveillance System and the Comprehensive Training Centre for National Defence Forces of Maldives. The two projects have been developed with Indian Grants.
India is likely to announce a few new projects to the Maldives including building a cricket Stadium there, renovating the Friday Mosque by Archaeological Survey of India. More from our correspondent;
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit evokes enthusiasm among people. Our correspondent spoke to a few people who reached Male from nearby islands to have a glimpse of Mr Modi and expressed hope that the business and other opportunities will improve with his visit to the Maldives.
Mr Natarajan hopes that the Prime Minister’s visit will rebuild confidence among ordinary Maldivians.
Tomorrow, Prime Minister Modi will reach Sri Lankan capital, Colombo. The visit is regarded as a move to express solidarity with the neighbouring nation in the wake of the Easter Sunday attacks.
Earlier this morning, Prime Minister Modi addressed a party meeting Abhinandan Sabha at Guruvayur in Kerala. He said, the BJP was not working for mere electoral politics and was keen on building the country and ensuring India gets its place of pride in the international arena. Prime Minister Modi said,
This is his first public engagement after leading the BJP to a grand victory in the general election. Modi said, he made Kerala his first stop after the win despite having no MP from the state since it was as dear to him as his constituency Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh.
The Prime Minister said, political parties and pundits failed to gauge the public mood ahead of the Lok Sabha election. He also thanked the electorate for reposing confidence in the BJP.
On the Nipah virus issue, he said the Centre was working “shoulder-to-shoulder” with the Kerala government to provide all required assistance.
Earlier, the Prime Minister offered prayers at the famous Lord Krishna temple at Guruvayur.