As Prime Minister Narendra Modi left for the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit on Thursday, June 13, the Indian ambassador to Kyrgyzstan Alok Dimri said that India hopes to further strengthen the relations with Central Asian countries and that a list of the bilateral meeting is lined up for the PM.
"There are two parts of the visit - one is SCO summit and the other is bilateral talks. On June 14, PM Modi will have held bilateral talks with various leaders, discussing will take place about India's relation with the other countries. We also have a business delegation, there will be a business forum. In all, we are hoping that the economies of Kyrgyzstan and India will be strengthened," Alok Dimri said.
"Central Asia is an interesting geography, it has a unique identity. New economic realities and economic possibilities are in Central Asia, so we want to strengthen our relations with these countries. In 2017 India became a member of SCO. The chairmanship os SCO is a rotational basis. We are happy that it is in Central Asia this time."," he added.
Prime Minister Modi held his first bilateral meeting after assuming the post for the second term with the Kyrgyzstan counterpart on May 30, hours after his oath-taking.
Meanwhile, Prime Miniter Narendra Modi left for the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan on Thursday morning. A day after Pakistan opened its air-space for PM Narendra Modi's aircraft to travel to Kyrgyzstan for the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit, the Prime Minister will not be using the Pakistani airspace for his journey.
Ministry of External Affairs sources has told that the government of India explored two options for the route of PM Modi's VVIP aircraft to Kyrgyzstan's capital Bishkek. The MEA has decided to take the VVIP aircraft through the route of Oman, Iran and Central Asian countries on the way to Bishkek for the summit.
The decision also came over a week after Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi wrote separate letters to their Indian counterparts, pushing for restarting bilateral talks. Pakistan PM Imran Khan will also be attending the summit, however, PM Modi and Pakistan PM Imran Khan are not slated to meet at Bishkek. However, India has made it clear that Prime Minister Modi will engage in any talks with the Pakistani counterpart, except unavoidable public exchange.
Tensions between the two countries worsened after the Pulwama terror attack and both the countries were almost on the brink of war after India's military planes struck a terrorist training camp in Pakistan's Balakot on February 26 and Pakistan carried out a counter-offensive the next day.