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High Commissioner of India, H.E. Santosh Jha’s Message on the occasion of 75th Republic Day of India

High Commissioner’s Message

My dear brothers and sisters from Sri Lanka,

Namaskar, Ayubhowan, Vanakkam!

I convey my greetings to you on the occasion of 75th Republic Day of India. It was on this day in 1950 that the Indian Constitution came into effect. India today stands at an inflection point. It is poised to take a quantum leap to become a developed country by 2047 – a Viksit Bharat.

A distinguishing factor in this vision of our Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi is the centrality of the people of the country. We believe that it is through ‘SabkaPrayas’ or through efforts of all that a ‘Viksit Bharat’ will materialise. There is a realisation that development, just as democracy, is of the people, for the people and by the people.

Indian vision for domestic growth and development is also driving our Neighbourhood First policy. We seek growth, security, stability, progress and development for all in our neighbourhood in keeping with our SAGAR policy.

The India-Sri Lanka partnership has been built on civilizational ties, geographical proximity, cultural connect, strong sense of solidarity and age-old goodwill.

In recent years, India has reaffirmed itself as a trusted, and reliable partner of Sri Lanka. Our vision for India-Sri Lanka partnership also places people at the centre. The roadmap for our partnership is determined by your needs and aspirations. It is now taking a new turn, to translate this traditional proximity into economic closeness.

According to the latest trade figures, India was Sri Lanka’s largest trading partner in 2022 with a bilateral trade of USD 6 billion. In recent years, we have also been the largest foreign investor in Sri Lanka. India continues to be the largest source of foreign tourists in Sri Lanka.

We are building on our existing achievements by seeking to implement the Vision Document agreed by our leaders in July 2023. India’s globally acknowledged economic potential, its technological advancement and sustained economic growth, along with the current phase of economic stabilisation, recovery, reconstruction and growth in Sri Lanka provide a unique opportunity to forge a formidable economic partnership for the benefit of our two peoples and the entire region.

The central theme of this Vision is enhancing connectivity to drive economic prosperity. Since the second half of 2023, ferry services between India and Sri Lanka re-commenced; thirteenth round of negotiations on Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement (ETCA) were held. Discussions on multi-product pipeline, land connectivity corridor and power grid interconnection have progressed. UPI is all set to be rolled out in Sri Lanka. The implementation of Unique Digital Identity seeks to introduce the human-centric transformations in Sri Lanka, just as we have witnessed in India in the last decade.

Solar electrification of religious places across Sri Lanka, assistance for modernisation of Sri Lankan railways, and our investments in energy, ports and airports development are all testimony to our abiding friendship.

Dear Friends, having assumed charge as the High Commissioner of India last month, I have to admit that the prospects of the India-Sri Lanka partnership are limitless. Its potential tangible impact on lives of our peoples makes me optimistic. It drives me to work harder to further deepen and strengthen it. I look forward to your support and cooperation in this regard.

May a Viksit Bharat propel a Viksit Sri Lanka. It is to this end that we dedicate ourselves!

Jai Hind.

Ayubowan. Vanakkam. Dhyanavad.

 

RD 2024_HC Message Tamil

RD 2024_HC Message Sinhala