09 July, New Delhi
After completing his 5 day long visit to Israel and Germany, Prime Minister Narendra Modi returned to Delhi early this morning. This visit could be seen as historic and path-breaking in many senses. Modi became the first Prime Minister to visit Israel.
The Israel visit was marked by a great degree of warmth and bonhomie between Prime Minister Modi and the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. During the 3 days that the Prime Minister Modi stayed in Israel, Netanyahu accompanied him to almost every programme. India and Israel agreed to upgrade their defence cooperation to the level of strategic relationship.
Both the countries also decided to give cooperation in Agriculture and water conservation the status of a strategic partnership. The two countries identified innovation, technology, cyber security, start ups and promotion of entrepreneurship as focus areas for bilateral cooperation.
Setting up of a joint Technology Innovation fund worth 40 million dollars and announcement of direct air service between Indian and Israel were high points of the visit.
The two countries also signed a number of MoUs in the fields of water conservation, agriculture and space research in line with the focus on development ties between the two countries.
On the second leg of his journey, Prime Minister visited Hamburg and participated in the 12th summit of the G 20 nations. It was marked by the leadership role India assumed in the adoption of a concrete plan of action against terrorism by the member countries of the grouping.
India proposed a comprehensive 11 point action plan to counter terrorism in the world during the summit. The G-20 nations agreed to evolve actionable strategies for cutting off financing of the terrorist activities. Recognising internet and social media as potent channels for misuse by terrorists, the leaders from the world’s 20 most powerful economies also decided to take steps to filter, detect and remove contents used for radicalization and terrorist activities.
India’s Sherpa for the G-20, Arvind Panagariya expressed satisfaction that the G-20 leaders issued a joint statement on counter terrorism in line with the action plan mooted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
At the summit, India also took a decisive role by offering to lead the coalition of countries to work with a clear cut plan and strategy against climate change. The G-20 declaration issued at the end of the summit reflected the leadership role India had taken by articulating its position on key areas like climate, free trade and sustainable development.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Israel and Germany was marked by many path breaking initiatives in the field of bilateral relations as well as on the multilateral forum like the G-20. Rightly termed historic, Prime Minister’s visit to Israel elevated the relationship between the two countries to a new level of openness and confidence.
The desire of the two countries to forge closer ties for improving the lives of their people was expressed in identifying areas such as water conservation, purification and agricultural technology for intensive cooperation.
At the G 20 Summit in Germany, India showed its remarkable ability in providing leadership of ideas on contentious issues to the most powerful countries of the world.
Prime Minister Modi succeeded in evolving a consensus among participating countries to evolve a concrete and effective action plan against terrorism. India also came out unequivocally in support of open trade and the need to take steps to check climate change