Nima Wangdi 

India’s External Affairs Minister, Dr S Jaishankar, will be on a two-day official visit to Bhutan from April 29 to 30.

The minister is visiting the country at the invitation of Bhutan’s Foreign Minister, Dr Tandi Dorji.

The press release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that the senior officials from India’s Ministry of External Affairs would be accompanying the minister, who also visited Bhutan in June 2019.

“This will be the first high-level official visit since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic,” it stated.

According to the foreign ministry officials, the delegation is visiting the country on bubble mode. This means they need not have to undergo five days mandatory facility quarantine, the standing protocol that other international arrivals should follow.

During his visit, Dr S Jaishankar will receive an audience with His Majesty the King and His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo. He will also call on Prime Minister Dr Lotay Tshering and Minister for Foreign Affairs Dr Tandi Dorji.

The press release stated matters of mutual interest would be discussed.

The press release stated that the visit is in keeping with the long-established tradition of regular exchange of high-level visits between Bhutan and India. “The External Affairs Minister’s visit will further strengthen the already existing close ties of friendship and cooperation between the two countries.”

According to the press release from the Indian External Affairs Ministry, the two countries will also discuss economic development and hydro-power cooperation among others during this visit.

It also stated the minister is travelling to the neighbouring countries as part of an in-person engagement with the neighbours. “He will be in Bangladesh today and will be in Bhutan tomorrow. He has also visited Maldives and Sri Lanka earlier.”

The press release also stated India and Bhutan share a unique and time tested bilateral relationship, characterised by utmost trust, goodwill and mutual understanding.