Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe landed at the Ahmedabad airport in Gujarat Wednesday for his two-day India visit. PM Abe is in India to attend the India-Japan summit.
Exactly three years after Abe flew down to Kyoto to welcome PM Modi, then on his first official visit to Japan as prime minister, the latter returned the courtesy by recieving the Japanese PM and and First Lady Akie Abe in his home-state Gujarat. The two leaders will take part in the India-Japan summit that begins from Thursday in Gandhinagar where they will review the progress in the multifaceted co-operation between India and Japan under the framework of their ‘Special Strategic and Global Partnership’.
The top 10 developments:
- PM Abe arrived in Ahmedabad around 3 pm IST and was warmly welcomed by PM Modi with a bear-hug. Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani and deputy CM Nitin Patel were also at the airport.
- The Japanese premier was accorded a ceremonial guard of honour at the airport. He also shook hands with several Indian officials.
- In a first of its kind display of friendship between the two leaders, Modi and Abe embarked on a 8-km long roadshow cutting across the heart of Ahmedabad. With Abe quickly changing his attire into a traditional kurta with a blue vest, the two leaders climbed on an open Gypsy amid heavy security. There were cultural performances on the roadside as the convoy carrying the two leaders and the First Lady whizzed by.
- Giant hoardings and posters of the two leaders lined the road leading to Sabarmati Ashram, the next destination.
- Japan’s first couple paid homage to Mahatma Gandhi at the Sabarmati Ashram and spent some time at the Sabrmati riverfront. They also signed the visitors’ book.
- Post a brief break, Abe and Modi arrived at the famous Sidi Saiyyid Ni Jaali mosque, which was built in 1572 AD by Sidi Sayyid and is known for its intricate lattice architecture.
- The two leaders accompanied by First Lady Akie Abe took a round of the mosque with the PM explaining to them about the intricate design and historical significance of the monument.
- PM Modi then hosted the Japanese premier for dinner at Agashiye terrace restaurant where they will also be likely discussing the agenda for the upcoming talks between the two sides. The dinner will likely feature several Gujarati dishes.
- On Thursday, the two leaders will lay the foundation for India’s first high-speed railway project between Mumbai and Ahmedabad.
- PM Modi and Abe will then hold extensive bilateral talks at the Mahatma Mandir in Gandhinagar, the venue for the annual India-Japan summit.