|Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be embarking on a two-day official visit to the Maldives and Sri Lanka tomorrow. This would be his first visit abroad after his re-election. |
In the first leg of his two-nation tour, Mr Modi will reach Male where he is scheduled to hold discussions on a range of subjects, including deepening economic, political and strategic relations. He will address the Maldivian Parliament, besides meeting all key leaders of the island nation including President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.
Mr Modi will also inaugurate two key projects sponsored by India, including coastal surveillance radar system and the Composite Training Centre for the Maldives National Defence Force. Mr Modi’s Sri Lankan visit on Sunday is regarded as a show of solidarity with the neighbouring nation after the recent suicide bombings there.
AIR correspondent reports thatPrime Minister Narendra Modi’s Maldives and Srilanka visit is in conformity with his foreign policy of ‘Neighbourhood First.’ It may be recalled that he met the leaders of all BIMSTEC nations after his swearing-in ceremony.
The Maldives is not a member country of the regional grouping and the Prime Minister’s choice of her capital Male as his first foreign destination indicates the top priority he is giving to strengthening cooperation with the neighbourhood nations.
The gesture by the Maldives of inviting Prime Minister Modi to address her Parliament is viewed as reflective of the glowing warmth and the trust being build up in the bilateral relations.
With Srilanka, talks on strengthening her infrastructure and connectivity and deepening strategic interests are on and his visit is set to accelerate them further. He would be the first international leader to visit Colombo after the recent terror attacks. The first foreign trip of Prime Minister Modi is set to give further impetus to one of India’s key foreign policy objectives, the security and growth for all in the region.