PM Modi to gift 200 cows to village in Rwanda
The locally sourced cows will be a contribution to Rwandan President Kagame’s flagship programme Girinka.india Updated: Jul 23, 2018 20:24 IST
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will gift 200 cows in a symbolic gesture to a village in Rwanda, his first stop in a five-day, three-nation tour of Africa which begins Monday.
The locally sourced cows will be a contribution to Rwandan President Paul Kagame’s flagship programme Girinka in which the poorest get cows from the government and gift the first female calf to a neighbour to promote brotherhood. The exercise also enables the poorest in Rwanda to have a livelihood. The national social protection scheme was personally initiated by the Rwandan President.
This is the first time an Indian Prime Minister is visiting Rwanda.
“The visit to Rwanda, Uganda and South Africa will further strengthen our relations with the African continent,” the External Affairs Ministry said in statement. “Africa has been the top priority of India’s foreign policy,” it said.
Cooperation in defence and agriculture will be Modi’s priorities during his bilateral visits to Rwanda and Uganda before he goes to South Africa for the annual Brazil, Russia, India China, South Africa (BRICS) Summit.
Ahead of Modi’s departure, TS Tirumurti, Secretary (Economic Relations) in the External Affairs Ministry, said India will open its first mission in Rwanda very soon. India’s current High Commissioner to Rwanda has residence in Kampala, Uganda.
The two countries will sign two lines of credit - one of $100 million for industrial parks and a similar amount for agriculture and irrigation. Rwanda is already a recipient of Indian lines of credit of nearly $400 million and of Indian training and scholarship programmes.
“We expect agreements to be concluded in the areas of defence, dairy cooperation, leather, agriculture and culture,” Tirumurti said.
In Uganda, Modi will meet President Yowei Museveni, hold delegation-level talks and take part in an India-Uganda joint business event and address the Ugandan parliament.
“We expect to extend two lines of credit for the first time to Uganda of $141 million regarding electricity lines and sub-stations and $64 million for agriculture and dairy production,” Tirumurti said.
Modi will reach South Africa on July 25 on the third and last leg of his visit. Besides the BRICS Summit, Modi will also hold a bilateral meeting with President Cyril Ramaphosa who took office in February.
Modi, along with other BRICS leaders, will participate in the restricted session, plenary session, leaders’ retreat, outreach with leaders from Africa and outreach with leaders from the global South.
In the BRICS-plus outreach, the invited countries of the global South include Argentina, Turkey, Indonesia, Jamaica and Egypt.
On the sidelines of the BRICS Summit, Modi will meet Chinese President Xi Jinping. This will be the third meeting between the two leaders this year.
(With IANS inputs)
First Published: Jul 23, 2018 17:56 IST