When President Pranab Mukherjee lands at Bhutan’s Paro airport on Friday, he will embark upon the first standalone visit of an Indian President to the neighbouring country in 26 years. Mukherjee’s visit assumes larger significance as Prime Minister Narendra Modi had visited Bhutan just five months ago.
While Mukherjee will review the ongoing Indo-Bhutan hydro-power projects—a key area in the dynamic bilateral relations, the President’s visit is also set open new areas of cooperation in the field of education, foreign secretary Sujata Singh said Thursday.
New Delhi will open gates of Nalanda University for Bhutanese students even as it is set to offer a slew of training programmes and capacity building programmes for students and officials. Bhutan will be the second country after Bangladesh whose students will get opportunity to study at Nalanda.
IIM (Ahmedabad) and English and Foreign Languages University too, will sign MoUs with Bhutan government for cooperation in the field of training.
Ahead of his visit, Mukherjee said in an interview, “The mutual trust, confidence, acquaintance and intimacy amongst the leaders have helped build the closer relationship, and this is reflected in various facets of activities.”
Railway minister Manoj Sinha and BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi are among other dignitaries who will accompany Mukherjee to Thimpu.