Five Central Asian countries to be chief guest at Republic Day

India has invited the five central Asian countries namely Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, as the chief guest for Republic Day celebrations, 2022.

Highlights

  • This is for the first-time that representatives of all five Central Asian countries would be guest at the Republic Day celebrations.
  • The last time they attended the ASEAN Summit together in 2018.
  • India shares historical, cultural and civilisational linkages with these countries.
  • Their presence at the Republic Day celebrations will help in strengthening the relationship between both the sides.

Dignitaries at Republic Day celebrations in India

Ever since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge in 2014, India invited

  • Then-US President Barack Obama in 2015
  • Then-French President Francois Hollande in 2016
  • UAE’s Md Bin Zayed Al Nahyan in 2017
  • All 10 ASEAN countries in 2018
  • Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa in 2019 and
  • Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil in 2020, for the Republic Day.

United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson was expected to attend Republic Day celebrations in 2021, but he couldn’t attend because of Covid-19 pandemic.

Central Asian-India Foreign Minister’s meet

India will also be hosting the Central Asian-India Foreign Minister’s meet on December 18 and 19, 2021. Its first meeting was held in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, in January 2019.  The second meeting was held virtually due to covid-19.

India’s support to central Asian countries

India has been providing its financial support to Central Asian countries. India has announced a line of credit worth US $1 billion to support the development of projects in fields like energy, IT, connectivity, healthcare, agriculture and education for the central Asian countries, in the past. India has also pitched for Chabahar port in Iran to get an easier route for connectivity. During the discussion, terrorism was also raised as major concern.

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