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Manmohan's agenda

The two countries are expected to sign a clutch of agreements in the fields of railways, education and cooperation in science and technology.

india Updated: Sep 30, 2006 12:27 IST
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India and South Africa will intensify their political, economic and cultural ties when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh goes to South Africa Saturday to launch the 100th anniversary of the launch of the satyagraha movement by Mahatma Gandhi.

The two countries are expected to sign a clutch of agreements in the fields of railways, education and cooperation in science and technology.

A preferential trade agreement with South African Customs Union (SACU) and agreements for bilateral investment protection and cooperation in agriculture and sports are also under consideration.

Singh and Mbeki will address an assorted audience of diplomats, intellectuals and Gandhians at the centenary celebrations in Johannesburg on October 2.

The centenary ceremony includes an inter-faith service, the introduction of relatives and colleagues of original sataygrahis and a performance by Indian sarod maestro Amjad Ali Khan.

On October 3, Singh will visit the Phoenix settlement, which was founded by Gandhi in 1904.

A meeting with iconic South African leader Nelson Mandela, an admirer of Gandhi's teachings, is also on the cards.

He will also visit Pietermaritzburg railway station near Durban where Gandhi was thrown out of the 'Whites Only' first-class compartment of a train on account of his race.

First Published: Sep 30, 2006 12:27 IST