Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday thanked the Indian diaspora in Kobe, Japan, and said they have contributed to the mandate that the Bharatiya Janata Party got in the recently-concluded Lok Sabha elections. “I am so happy to hear that this was a win for ‘truth’ and ‘democracy’,” he said. “You see India accurately since you see it from a distance.”
Japan has played an important role in India’s economic development, said Modi, reported PTI. He added that over the next five years, bilateral ties will become stronger as India aimed to become a $5 trillion economy.
Modi said the ties between India and Japan have become stronger ever since the two countries cooperated to make a car. “There was a time when we were collaborating in building cars and today we are collaborating in building a bullet train,” Modi told the Indian diaspora. “Today there is no such part of India where Japan’s projects or investments have not left its mark. Similarly talent and manpower of India are contributing to strengthen Japan.”
India, along with Japan’s help, is planning to run its first bullet train between Mumbai and Ahmedabad. The bullet train corridor from Mumbai to Ahmedabad would be an elevated 508-km high-speed rail line meant to benefit diamond merchants, textile traders and other professionals shuttling between the two cities. The project is slated to cost Rs 1.1 lakh crore, of which the Japan International Cooperation Agency is slated to fund Rs 88,000 crore at an interest rate of 0.1%. The project has faced stiff opposition from farmers and land owners in both Gujarat and Maharashtra.
Modi said Indian people have for the first time elected a government of their choice. “More than 61 crore people have voted during the elections in India this year,” said Modi. “More than 10 lakh poll stations, 600 EVMs were active during the elections. In future, India will be only country who will break their own record.”
The prime minister said the dreams and aspirations of “New India” will help strengthening the ties with Japan. “After the second World War, our relations started getting stronger,” said Modi, according to ANI. “After 2014, after I became the PM, I have been able to strengthen my diplomatic relations with PM Abe. [I] have travelled many places with him.”
Modi said India is moving towards exploring the space. “We are now launching Chandrayaan Mission,” he said. “By 2022, our first manned mission should be complete and launched. We want an Indian space station too.”
Modi arrived in the Japanese city of Oaska earlier on Thursday for the G20 summit, which will start on Friday. He met his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe, and the two leaders discussed many aspects of the India-Japan relations, said the Prime Minister’s Office.
This year’s theme for the summit is “Human-Centred Future Society”. Apart from India and Japan, other participants are the US, UK, European Union, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Russia, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Korea, South Africa, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey. India has participated in all the G20 summits held so far, and will host the summit in 2022 for the first time.