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ASEAN pats Manmohan on his second term

As he met Asian leaders bilaterally and collectively here, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was hailed for taking the reins of India for a second term.

world Updated: Oct 25, 2009 11:47 IST

As he met Asian leaders bilaterally and collectively here, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was hailed for taking the reins of India for a second term.

After Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao who did so on Saturday morning, all the leaders of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) congratulated the Indian leader on his re-election in May this year.

It was the first time most of them were meeting Manmohan Singh after the May Lok Sabha election.

Despite tensions in Sino-Indian ties, Wen made it a point of congratulating Manmohan Singh as they opened their talks at Hotel Dusit Thani, the venue of the ASEAN and East Asia summits over the weekend.

On Saturday night, an ASEAN statement said its leaders congratulated the Indian leader "on his re-election as prime minister ... and expressed their conviction that his second term would further strengthen and cement the existing close partnership between ASEAN and India".

Manmohan Singh became the prime minister of India in May 2004. The Congress returned to power in May this year with a comfortable majority in the Lok Sabha, the lower house of parliament, and Manmohan Singh, an internationally renowned economist, was again chosen as prime minister.