Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Sri Lanka in May, according to ANI report. During his visit to the Emerald Isle, PM Modi will take part in the celebrations marking the UN ‘Vesak Day. UN ‘Vesak Day’ celebrations will be held from May 12 to 14. Notably, this is Prime Minister Modi’s second visit to Sri Lanka. He had visited the country earlier in May, 2015.
The ‘International Day of Vesak’ will be hosted by the Buddhist-majority country and the commemorations in Colombo will include an International Buddhist Conference in which over 400 delegates from more than 100 countries will participate. Vesak is the most important day in the Buddhist calendar. It commemorates Lord Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and passing away, according to PTI.
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During the Prime Minister’s visit, it is expected that India will take up the fishermen issue and China’s growing influence in the island with Sri Lanka, according to a PTI report.
Prime Minister Modi’s visit will come after his Sri Lankan counterpart Ranil Wickremesinghe’s arrival to India on April 25. Wickremesinghe will be on a five-day visit during which he will hold talks with Prime Minister Modi to further expand ties in a range of areas and find a solution to the vexed fishermen issue.
“The Prime Minister will have a luncheon meeting with Ranil Wickremesinghe on April 26,” Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) official spokesperson Gopal Baglay said.
It has been learned that PM Modi will have a packed schedule of foreign visits from next month till July, starting with the trip to Sri Lanka, as per PTI report.
Besides Sri Lanka, he is slated to travel to the US, Israel, Russia, Germany, Spain and Kazakshstan, officials told PTI here today.
After Sri Lanka, the Prime Minister will be travelling to St Petersburg in Russia to attend the St Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) to be held from June 1-3.
Along with that, he is expected to travel to Germany and Spain on bilateral visits, the officials said.
Subsequently, Modi will be visiting Kazakhstan to attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meet to be held in Astana on June 7-8.
Significantly, Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is also expected to attend the Summit of the SCO, a grouping which includes Russia, China, Kazakshstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
Thereafter, the Prime Minister is slated to travel to Hamburg in Germany to attend the G-20 Summit scheduled to take place on July 7-8, the officials said.
He will also be travelling to the US and Israel, for which dates are being finalised, the officials said.
(With agency updates)