President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Prime Minister, friends,
I am very pleased to be able to meet with you again and, in this face-to-face meeting, would like to heartily congratulate you on your party’s victory in the elections and your resounding victory and re-election as India’s Prime Minister.
Mr Prime-Minister, in the course of the past years, we have done a great deal to promote our interstate relations. They have developed steadily, including through your personal efforts and your attention to the development of Russian-Indian relations. As you know – I have told you about this already –you have been decorated with the highest state award of the Russian Federation, the Order of St Andrew the Apostle. I would like to congratulate you on this as well and express my hope that after your re-election, our work on promoting bilateral contacts and relations for the benefit of the peoples of India and the Russian Federation will continue.
We have a very busy agenda ahead – and not just within the framework of our work here in Bishkek, but also at various other platforms that we plan to use for further communication. Apart from everything else, I would like to invite you to be the main guest of the Eastern Economic Forum, which will be held in Vladivostok in September.
Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi (retranslated): Your excellency,
I am here in my capacity as Prime Minister, and I am glad to meet with you after my re-election. You congratulated me even before the final results were announced. You came to India last year. In some sense, you predicted my victory last year. Your belief and confidence, coming from a close friend like you, mean a lot to me. I would like to sincerely thank you for this.
I would also like to express my sincere gratitude to you for decorating me with a state award. This is a great honour for me. I know that it is the highest Russian state award. I would also like to express my gratitude on behalf of the Indian people.
Speaking about the production of Kalashnikovs, you supported this decision and you were personally involved in it. I would also like to express my sincere gratitude for this. If we really set our minds to achieving something, we can do a great deal within a very definite timeframe. This is an excellent example of what we both were able to accomplish. We have created an atmosphere of friendship. Of course, this is very advantageous. Being India’s old friend is also very important for our relations.
I would like to thank you once again. I hope that we will soon meet again in Japan. I believe that we should also hold talks in the RIC format there – Russia–India–China, and we should continue to meet at other venues as well.