KP Sharma

India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, said that the Government of India will grant 100 billion Indian Rupees assistance in the 13th plan.

PM Modi is currently on a two- day visit to Bhutan starting yesterday.

This visit is important because it’s his last official visit as Prime Minister before the upcoming elections in India.

During his visit, PM Modi received the prestigious Nga-dag Pelgi Khorlo, also known as the Order of Druk Gyalpo by His Majesty the King. His Majesty the King conferred the honour upon him on December 17, 2021.

PM Modi was honoured with the Order of the Druk Gyalpo award in recognition of his outstanding contributions in strengthening Bhutan-India relation and to the global community under his leadership.

This award signifies the deep appreciation for his efforts and makes him the first foreigner to receive the highest recognition in Bhutan.

The Order of Druk Gyalpo is the highest civilian decoration in Bhutan.

PM Modi expressed his gratitude for the recognition and conveyed his happiness. He praised Bhutan for its remarkable progress as a successful nation over the years and highlighted the strengthening bond between the two neighbouring countries.

PM Modi said that the prestigious award is a dedication to all 1.4 billion Indians.

The Prime Minister said that India and Bhutan share a special and unique relationship characterised by mutual trust and understanding. This special bond, he said, has strengthened over the years, fostering strong ties between the two nations.

In an era greatly affected by climate change, PM Modi praised Bhutan’s position  as a carbon-neutral country.

He said that Bhutan’s commitment to maintaining carbon neutrality serves as a compelling example for the rest of the world.

Prime Minister Modi highlighted that as Bhutan undergoes profound digital and technological transformation, both nations have to come together to leverage technology for rapid economic growth and to enhance the well-being of their people.

PM Modi aligned this vision with His Majesty’s initiative to develop the Gelephu Special Administrative Region, adding that it would promote partnerships and bring the people of Bhutan and India closer together.

He further stressed on the importance of excellent people-to-people relations as the foundation of exceptional bilateral ties, mentioning the promotion of scholars, academics, tourists, students, youth, and sports persons to strengthen these ties.

The Prime Minister pledged India’s support for accelerating partnerships in sectors that promote youth development through education, skilling, entrepreneurship, technology, sports, and creative and cultural industries.

He applauded Bhutan’s vision to become a high-income nation by 2034 and commended its progress in economic development.

PM Modi also highlighted India’s rapid socio-economic progress and technological advancements, aiming to become a developed nation by 2047.

He added the importance of people-to-people connectivity, including physical connectivity through rail links, roads, airways, and waterways, along with trade infrastructure to facilitate smooth cross-border movement of goods and services.

Regarding the connectivity, the Prime Minister mentioned initiatives such as the construction of the Gelephu -Kokrajhar and Samtse-Banarhat railway links to enhance connectivity between the two nations.

In addition, he proposed partnership in building integrated checkposts as additional measures to strengthen people-to-people connectivity.