The BJP-led NDA is gearing up for the ceremony at which Narendra Modi will be sworn in as the Prime Minister of India for a second term. The party is in the process of preparing invites for global leaders for the ceremony, which is likely to be organised on 30 May on an even bigger scale than the 2014 one.
In keeping with the government's "neighbourhood first" and "Act East" policies, invitations are likely to be sent out to countries part of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), along with member States of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC).
Moreover, some reports said Pakistan may not be invited to Modi's swearing-in this year. In 2014, the then prime minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif had attended the event.
Additionally, leaders of the P5 countries — the US, Russia, UK, France and China — are also likely to be invited. Japan, Germany and Israel, as well as Saudi Arabia and the UAE, which are prominent members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), may also be sent invitations. Members of the BIMSTEC group are likely to be invited, as well.
Presidents of the US, Russia and China — Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping — are some of the world leaders who are likely to be invited. However, reports quoted government officials as saying that the invitations will only be issued after the Prime Minister's Office decides on it. They called the speculation around the invitations as "premature", but said a decision was likely soon.
Sri Lanka president Maithripala Sirisena has already indicated his willingness to attend Modi's swearing-in ceremony. An official at Sirisena's office confirmed the news to The Hindu. "It is confirmed. The president spoke to Mr Modi yesterday," the official was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
News18 reported that sources in the Sri Lankan establishment confirmed that Sirisena's visit was aimed at balancing ties with India after his recent visit to China. His attendance at Modi's swearing-in ceremony would send out a strong message of Sri Lanka being keen on keeping its momentum in ties with India, the sources added.
In 2014, top leadership of all seven member nations of the SAARC, along with Mauritius, attended Modi's oath-taking ceremony at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.
What is the text of the Prime Minister's oath?
“I, ___, do swear in the name of God/solemnly affirm that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of India as by law established, [that I will uphold the sovereignty and integrity of India] that I will faithfully and conscientiously discharge my duties as the Prime Minister for the Union and that I will do right to all manner of people in accordance with the Constitution and the law, without fear or favour, affection or ill-will.
I will not directly or indirectly affirm, communicate or reveal to any person or persons any matter which shall be brought under my consideration or shall become known to me as the Prime Minister for the Union except as may be required for the due discharge of my duties as such Minister.”
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Updated Date: May 26, 2019 12:57:17 IST