Indian PM Modi welcomed to family dinner at Bhutan palace
Courtesy: ANI

Indian PM Modi welcomed to family dinner at Bhutan palace

During Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's recent State visit to Bhutan, the Himalayan country's King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck hosted a special family dinner for him. The rare and special gesture reflected the friendship and camaraderie shared between the leaders of the two nations.

At the private dinner hosted at the Lingkana Palace, the entire family of the king including Queen Jetsun Pema and their three children Jigme Namgyel, Jigme Ugyen, and Sonam Yangden were present. The Royal family bonded with PM Modi as a family member, highlighting the special ties between the two countries.

Pictures from the dinner showed PM Modi interacting with the two young princes while princess Sonam who was born in September last year cradled in Queen Pema's lap.

Another significant gesture during PM Modi's State visit and symbolic of the significant advancement of ties between Bhutan and India was the Order of Drik Gyalpo bestowed on him.

PM Modi became the first foreign dignitary and only the fourth person overall to receive the honour. As per ranking and precedence established, the Order of the Druk Gyalpo was instituted as the decoration for lifetime achievement and is the pinnacle of the honour system in Bhutan, taking precedence over all orders, decorations and medals.

PM Modi was given the honour for his "outstanding contribution to the growth of India-Bhutan relations and for his distinguished service to the Bhutanese nation and people".

After PM Modi departed following his March 22-23 State visit the Bhutanese King termed him an 'exceptional leader' and adding that countries require such leaders to advance and flourish.

In a video message, King Wangchuk underlined that India has paved the way for a promising and prosperous future and that Bhutan applauds and rejoices in India's accomplishments.

"Under Prime Minister Modi's leadership, India has not only achieved remarkable success in the past decade, but also paved the way for a promising and prosperous future. We applaud and rejoice in India's accomplishments. Countries require exceptional leaders to advance and flourish, yet such leaders are rare. To find an exceptional leader must possess compassion, a deep dedication to the country, and a willingness to devote themselves entirely to the service of the country," Bhutan's king said.

On March 23 as PM Modi departed for New Delhi, in a special gesture, the King of Bhutan, Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Bhutanese PM Tshering Tobgay came to see him off at the airport.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi thanked Bhutan King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck for the special gesture. The two sides renewed their commitment to the special and unique ties shared by the two countries.

Meanwhile, during his State visit to Bhutan, PM Modi inaugurated Gyaltsuen Jetsun Pema Wangchuck Mother and Child Hospital along with his Bhutanese counterpart Tshering Tobgay.

Tobgay expressed his gratitude towards the Indian government for fully funding the construction of the state-of-the-art hospital.

PM Modi and his Bhutanese counterpart reviewed all aspects of bilateral energy cooperation and, welcomed the expert-level discussions on the 1200 MW Punatsangchhu-I Hydro-electric Project, adding that they look forward to the commissioning of the 1020 MW Punatsangchhu-II Hydro-electric Project later this year.

The two leaders agreed that the India-Bhutan energy partnership has the potential to benefit both countries by enhancing energy security, strengthening their economies, generating employment, enhancing export earnings, and contributing to the further development of industrial and financial capacities.

PM Modi also announced a substantial assistance package of Rs 10,000 crore for Bhutan's 13th five-year plan, further solidifying the bond between the two countries.


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