World leaders in awe of India and PM Modi

Subhasini Naicker Wednesday 24th May 2023 08:11 EDT

World leaders at the G7 summit in Japan recently showered immense praise and awe for India and its Prime Minister, Narendra Modi. They have been singing praises of Modi’s knowledge and diplomacy.

Leaders from around the world were completely taken aback by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the recently concluded G7 summit in Japan.

Leaders of the seven major powers (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, United Kingdom, United States and European Union) attended the meeting along with those of guest and observer countries. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met his counterparts from different nations during the summit. As the elections are around the corner in many countries, world leaders are trying to gain popularity to win.

India's growing global impact and reliance force the G7 to consider its viewpoint. India's participation in the G7 demonstrates that it is a democratic big power that is responsible and non-authoritarian. India stands third in the world when it comes to defence expenditure. India's GDP is similar to the UK, and higher than France, Italy, and Canada. Therefore, G7 invites India every year and wants to communicate. Modi unveiled the bust of Mahatma Gandhi at Hiroshima Peace Park in Japan. The bust was gifted by India to Hiroshima as a symbol of friendship and goodwill between India and Japan.

In their second face-to-face meeting since the G20 Summit in Indonesia last November, Modi and Sunak reportedly discussed innovation, research, and the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership. Sharing details of the meeting, Modi tweeted a series of images of his interaction with the British PM. He wrote, “Productive discussion with UK PM @RishiSunak on the sidelines of the Hiroshima G-7 Summit.”

The official Twitter account of the British High Commission in India retweeted the post adding more pictures of the leaders sharing a hug with the caption,“Ek mazboot dosti (a strong friendship).”

Notably, after Sunak's first ever meeting with Modi in 2022, he posted a photo of them hand-in-hand with the same caption saying, “United by friendship.”

An official statement by the Ministry of External Affairs read, “Leaders agreed to deepen cooperation across a wide range of areas, such as trade & investment, science & technology, higher education, and people-to-people relationships.”

Downing Street also stated that the British Indian leader's first trip to India is anticipated to be for the G20 Summit in New Delhi later this year due to India's G20 presidency. The PM expressed enthusiasm over welcoming Sunak in September.

Modi, Sunak's commitment to FTA

PM Modi and Sunak reaffirmed their commitment to an ambitious and advantageous agreement while reviewing the India-UK Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and the status of the ongoing FTA discussions.

The two leaders decided to expand their cooperation in a variety of fields, including trade and investment, science and technology, higher education, and intercultural exchanges, according to a readout. “They discussed progress on a UK-India Free Trade Agreement. The leaders agreed that their teams would continue to work at pace to finalise an ambitious and mutually beneficial deal,” a Downing Street spokesperson was quoted as saying.

“The leaders discussed the wider objectives of the G7 Summit and Sunak committed his strong support for India’s G20 presidency, which comes at a crucial time for global security and prosperity. He looked forward to working closely with PM Modi ahead of a successful summit later this year,” the spokesperson added.

With PM Sunak, his wife Akshata Murthy also joined in their first official visit to G7 Summit in Japan. He paid a visit to the Hiroshima atomic blast site before beginning his tour with a speech about the Hiroshima Accord, a global strategic alliance between the UK and Japan. The historic agreement is thought to be essential to Britain's Indo-Pacific strategy and to counter China's sway in the area.

Many top leaders such as Zelensky, Biden, Albanese praised Modi for his demonstrating the democracies in every matter. His actions have made a huge impact on the Indo-pacific region such as climate change, food security etc.

Your popularity is a problem for me: Biden to Modi

Calling PM Modi “too popular”, US President Biden said, “I have run out of tickets” for a dinner scheduled in Washington in honour of the former during his state visit to the US in June. “I should take your autograph. You are causing me a real problem. Everyone wants to come (to the dinner), from movie stars to relatives. I’ve run out of tickets,” Biden told Modi. He also praised PM Modi for “making a significant impact on everything, including what we are doing in the Quad”. Biden said, “You made a fundamental shift in climate change. You have influence in the Indo-Pacific. You are making a difference”.

The whole world is watching India as it is sitting at the high. Biden told Modi that he is demonstrating that democracies matter, he has influence in the Indo-Pacific region and he made a significant impact on everything.

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said he too was getting similar requests for the event. According to the media, Albanese recalled the occasion when 90,000 spectators gathered to cheer him on during the victory lap at the Narendra Modi stadium. Hearing this, Biden told Modi in a lighter vein that he should take his autograph!

Modi at G7: The Million-Buck Handshake

India's position on the conflict between Russia and Ukraine has generated considerable controversy. India has often said that it opposes war and has justified and clarified its position. India has maintained a neutral stance in the UN, while the Ukrainian equivalent has vigorously contested this position.

In their first bilateral meeting since Russia's invasion of Ukraine, PM Modi assured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that India would do everything in its power to put an end to the conflict via negotiations and diplomacy and to lessen the suffering of the Ukrainian people.

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