Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu wished to take this Rajasthani ‘chai’ home, got a big surprise instead

By: | Updated: January 22, 2018 3:23 PM

Netanyahu's new love - for India's favourite Tea - is making the news. In a visit to Rashtrapati Bhavan, the Israeli PM was served olive tea made in Rajasthan.

Netanyahu has termed his India visit as “historic” and said his six-day trip will be “long remembered” as it contributed to the strengthening of bilateral ties.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu loves Indian culture and tradition. Recently, Netanyahu was seen flying kites and even posed with Bollywood personalities. Now, Netanyahu’s new love – for India’s favourite Tea – is making the news. In a visit to Rashtrapati Bhavan, the Israeli PM was served olive tea made in Rajasthan. Interestingly, Netanyahu found the tea delicious and wished to take its recipe to Israel. Later, it emerged that the olive plant – from which the Tea leaves were prepared – was brought from Israel a decade ago. Actually, the Olive farming in Rajasthan was started in Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje’s previous regime. During her stint, a group of scientists had visited Israel and brought the Olive plant to India. Speaking to a Hindi Daily Dainik Bhaskar, Rajasthan Agricultural Minister Prabhu Lal Saini said that its a matter of pride for the state.

The tea served to Netanyahu is manufactured in Bikaner by the Rajasthan Olive Cultivation Ltd, a joint venture between the state government and Israeli partners. The information was made public by Rashtrapati Bhavan in its official statement as a prominent example of the cooperation between the two countries in agriculture. While Olives are an integral part of the Jewish state, with its emblem being adorned by two branches of the olive tree, the tea, of course, is among the most loved beverages of India.

Appreciating Israel’s cooperation in the field of agriculture, the President said Israel had taught India “to do more with less”. “Israel’s support has served our farmers exceedingly well, especially in water-deficient areas. As we work to make our farming choices more sustainable, we will seek more Israeli support,” Kovind said. As per the Rashtrapati Bhawan statement, President Kovind told Israeli PM Netanyahu that his visit to India was a culmination of celebrations to mark the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Israel. “Our warm and friendly ties are growing stronger. In a little over two years, the two countries have exchanged Presidential and Prime Ministerial visits,” he said.

Meanwhile, Netanyahu has termed his India visit as “historic” and said his six-day trip will be “long remembered” as it contributed to the strengthening of bilateral ties. Netanyahu arrived in New Delhi on January 14 and was received by his “friend” Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the airport, setting aside the protocol.

“I returned last week from a historic visit to India. I thank my friend, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, for the exceptionally strong and warm reception,” Netanyahu told his cabinet at the start of the weekly meeting. “It reflects the closer ties between us, very close, as well as the closer ties between our countries and peoples,” he said. “This is a visit that will be long-remembered. It contributed, and will yet contribute, to Israel in the economic, security, technology and diplomatic spheres,” he added. Modi accompanied the Israeli Prime Minister for the most part of the trip. India and Israel signed nine agreements across several sectors to boost bilateral trade and cooperation

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