PM calls on Indian President

Visit: Lyonchhoen Tshering Tobgay, on his first day in Delhi called on the President, Vice President and met the Indian Foreign secretary, Minister of External Affairs and the minister of Power yesterday.

President of India, Pranab Mukherjee welcomed Lyonchhoen and said Lyonchhoen’s speech at the Vibrant Gujarat event has made a positive impact in India.

The President also mentioned about PM Modi’s visit to Bhutan shortly after the elections and recalled most fondly, his recent visit to Bhutan. Lyonchhoen informed the President about the close economic cooperation between India and Bhutan.

Lyonchhoen also paid a courtesy visit to the Vice President of India, Mohammed Hamid Ansari. They discussed the relation that Bhutan and India shared.

“No two countries in the world have such good relations like Bhutan and India,” the Vice President said.

Discussions were also held on democracy and the progress of the 11th Plan.

In the morning, Foreign Secretary of India, Sujatha Singh called on Lyonchhoen. Lyonchhoen thanked the government of India for their support in Bhutan’s development.

They agreed to work towards realising the target of producing 10,000MW of electricity by 2020 and also discussed the issue of recent communal violence in Assam and on improving border security.

After that, the External Affairs minister of India, Sushma Swaraj called on Lyonchhoen.  They discussed Indo-Bhutan relations and the sub-regional cooperation between Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Bhutan. The discussions also touched on building economic and security cooperation.

Towards the after noon, the Minister of Power, Piyush Goyal, called on Lyonchhoen. Lyonchhoen thanked the power minister for India’s longstanding support in the hydropower industry. The minister assured that India’s willingness to continue supporting the hydropower sector in Bhutan.

“This is the beginning of a big friendship,” he said.

They also discussed other alternative sources of energy such as wind and solar.

Lyonchhoen then met with members of the India Bhutan Friendship Association and in the evening, Lyonchhoen also met with the Ambassador of European Union to Bhutan.

By Tshering Wangdi, Delhi

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