Honour for India: PM Modi on his French Grand Cross honour
“Humbled” at being conferred with France's highest honour, the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said it was an "honour for the 140 crore people of India".
On the second day of his two-day Paris visit, Modi joins French President Emmanuel Macron for the French National Day, Bastille Day, celebration in Paris as the Guest of Honour. This year also marks the 25th anniversary of the strategic partnership between the two countries.
An Indian Tri-services contingent will be part of the Bastille Day Parade, while three Indian Air Force Rafale fighter jets, as part of the military contingent, are also set to participate in the Bastille Day flypast over the Champs Elysees, Paris.
The Bastille Day Parade is the highlight of celebrations of the day that marks the anniversary of the storming of the Bastille prison, an ancient royal fortress in 1789 during the French Revolution. This year the Bastille Day Parade will have about 6,300 soldiers in various marching contingents.
At a special dinner hosted by Macron on the evening of July 13, both sides exchanged a series of gifts. The gifts to Modi included:
A framed facsimile of the photograph ‘A Parisian presenting flowers to a Sikh’, July 14, 1916.
Reproduction of the Charlemagne chessmen (11th century).
Famous and historic works of French literature.