Russia and India on Wednesday agreed to restart the cultural exchanges between the two countries on the lines of those held in years 2003 and 2005.
The visiting Russian Federation minister of culture and mass communications Alexender Sokolov called on Union Tourism and Culture Minister Ambika Soni to discuss the cultural and bilateral relations between Russia and India.
Noting that the relations between the two countries were characterised by "deep mutual trust and confidence", Soni conveyed to the visiting dignitary the "high importance" India attaches to Russia.
She said the strengthening of relations between the two countries could be gauged by a series of high level exchanges in the last two years, which included visits to Russia by President APJ Abdul Kalam, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and visits to India by Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov and the current visit of President Vladimir Putin.
Both leaders recalled holding of the 'Days of Russian Culture' in India in 2003 and 'Days of Indian Culture' in Russia in 2005.
Soni recalled in particular the wholehearted support of her Russian counterpart for the 'Days of Indian Culture' held in Russia during 2005.
Soni said that with the proposed signing of the new 'Cultural Exchange Programme' for the years 2007-09, the cultural and academic exchanges between two countries will get a new boost. The minister also briefed Sokolov about the success of Incredible India campaign at the international platforms.