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Shinzo Abe in Gujarat, as it happened: Japanese PM visits Sabarmati Ashram, Sidi Saiyyed mosque on Day 1

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Shinzo Abe in Gujarat, as it happened: Japanese PM visits Sabarmati Ashram, Sidi Saiyyed mosque on Day 1
  • 18:18 (IST)

    Gujarat cherishes Japan's friendship for being the first partner in Vibrant Gujarat

  • 18:17 (IST)

    When I first visited Japan as CM of Gujarat, I had said that I want to see a mini Japan in Gujarat. Today that dream has come true: PM Modi

  • 18:05 (IST)

    China says India, Japan ties pose no 'grave threat' to Beijing

    China has always been wary of growing proximity between India and Japan with whom it has territorial disputes. The state-run Chinese media has often been critical of fast developing ties between India and Japan.

    An op-ed in the Global Times said "the India-Japan intimacy is more like a contrivance" and both were "are unlikely to challenge China without giving it a serious thought".

    It said China would never follow India and Japan "who have somewhat lost themselves".

  • 18:02 (IST)

  • 17:51 (IST)

    'Rudraksh' Varanasi Convention Centre, to be a cultural garland that Japan has accorded India: PM Modi

  • 17:25 (IST)

    Meanwhile.. Akie Abe visits the Vocational Training Unit at Blind People's Association (BPA)

  • 16:57 (IST)

    India, Japan sign agreement allowing airlines to fly unlimited flights between both countries

    India and Japan on Thursday signed an agreement under which their airlines can operate an unlimited number of flights between the two countries. Japanese carriers All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines, and Indian carriers Air India and Jet Airways are the airlines that fly between the two countries.

  • 16:50 (IST)

    'Security diamond' returns with a vengeance at India-Japan summit

    On the second day of Shinzo Abe's two-day visit, a familiar theme returned to the agenda: Asia’s Democratic Security Diamond as coined by the Japanese prime minister back in 2012.

    "I envisage a strategy whereby Australia, India, Japan, and the US state of Hawaii form a diamond to safeguard the maritime commons stretching from the Indian Ocean region to the western Pacific. I am prepared to invest, to the greatest possible extent, Japan’s capabilities in this security diamond," Abe had stated.

    One of the motives of this proposed security diamond is to curb China's increasingly expansionist attitude in the South China Sea region -- something that directly affects Japan. Even if this eventually turns out to be a case of mere saber-rattling, Beijing appears to have already received the message. 

    Read Full article here

  • 16:44 (IST)

    India, Japan ink 3 MoUs in science & technology sector

    The first pact was signed for an international joint exchange programme between Interdisciplinary Theoretical and Mathematical Sciences (iTHEMS) at Japanese research institute RIKEN and the National Centre for Biological Sciences (Simons-NCBS), Bengaluru. The other two MoUs were inked between the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science & Technology (AIST), Japan - PTI

  • 16:27 (IST)

    'In a way it's free,' PM Modi on cost of bullet train

    In an apparent move to silence the critics of the muti-million ambitious bullet train project, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today reasserted that India's gains from the project are much more than it's cost. 

    “Ek prakar se muft mein (In a way it is free),” Modi said reminding that the project was made possible thanks to the Japanese loan of Rs 88,000 crore at an attractive 0.1 per cent interest to be repaid over 50 years,  The Indian Express reported. 

  • 16:14 (IST)

    In Pictures: PM Modi, Shinzo Abe at Bullet Train simulator 

  • 16:13 (IST)

  • 15:56 (IST)

    PM Modi and Shinzo Abe inaugurated Bullet Train Research Institute in Vadodara via video conferencing.

  • 15:45 (IST)

    India-Japan to explore possibilities of boosting infra projects in North East

  • 15:40 (IST)

    Behind high optics infra projects, India-Japan slowly strengthening defence cooperation 

    While the cheer and aplomb around bullet train is dominating headlines, India and Japan are quietly strengthening defence cooperation. Speaking to the press, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar said, "Till now the thrust of the contacts and cooperation have been on maritime security only. We agreed to explore cooperation and exchanges between our Armies/ Ground Self defence force and Air Force and Japan's Air Defence." 

  • 15:26 (IST)

    India, Japan sign 15 deals, agree to strengthen cooperation in India-Pacific region

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe held wide-ranging talks on key bilateral, regional and international issues and discussed ways to deepen ties in trade, security and civil nuclear energy.

    During the talks between the two leaders, India and Japan inked 15 pacts to give a boost to cooperation in various key sectors, including civil aviation, trade and science and technology.

  • 15:01 (IST)

    Despite euphoria, bullet train project still has land acquisition hurdles to cross

    Even as the nation is cheering and rejoicing over India's first high speed rail project, the enthusiasm will soon be sullied because the railway authorities are yet to acquire the required private land. Of this entire stretch, 92 percent will be elevated and six percent will be tunneled, The Asian Agereported. The remaining two percent, about 825 hectares of land, may become a major hurdle for completing the bullet train project by 2022.

    Rail authorities are also facing a tough time convincing villagers near Virar to give away their land for the project. The rail officials were abused by villagers when they went to discuss the matter.

    Some initial reports have identified 163 villages in eight districts of Gujarat, 44 villages in three districts of Maharashtra and some areas in Dadra and Nagar Haveli for land acquisition. About 2,761 families will be affected. 

    Read the full report here

  • 14:43 (IST)

    India, Japan team up against terror

  • 14:36 (IST)

    Bullet train project not economically viable, says Congress

    Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said in Lok Sabha that his party was not against any development project, but added that the Ahmedabad-Mumbai bullet train project was not economically viable. "We are not against any project, but what is the aim? This project is not economically viable," Kharge said.

    "The air fare between Mumbai and Ahmedabad is Rs 2,000, and the bullet train fare would be between Rs 2,800 to Rs 5,000... Only if one lakh passengers travel in the train the project will be economically viable," said Kharge.

    He added that Rs 60,000 crore was being spent on land acquisition, and the cost of the project which has been pitched at Rs 1,10,000 crore may further escalate during implementation.

  • 14:33 (IST)

    Modi-Abe hype suggests Gujarat ready to bullet train right now

    The fact that the bullet train will be completed only by 2022-23 was lost on most of those present at Thursday's event.

    Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis seemed so excited that he wanted Modi to inaugurate the train in Mumbai, even though he noted that the ground breaking was taking place in Gujarat. 

    Gujaratis are known to lap it up with great awe when a foreign dignitary calls Narendra Modi a friend. In this case, Abe started his speech with 'Namaskar' and went on to say that he "loved Gujarat" and he would wish to "come here again with Narendra Modi in the bullet train, chatting and looking at the beautiful countryside from the window." He not only called Japan an old friend of India, remembering how he addressed the Indian Parliament ten years ago, but Modi a "dear friend and a world leader."

    Read here

  • 14:28 (IST)

    Smriti Irani hails bullet train project

    In a series of tweets, Union minister Smriti Irani praised the Ahmedabad-Mumbai bullet train project, saying that it symbolised growth in the country.

  • 14:18 (IST)

  • 14:17 (IST)

  • 14:14 (IST)

    The 15 MoUs signed at the India-Japan Summit meet:

    -Disaster Risk Management

    - Japanese Language Education in India between MEA and MOFA, Japan

    - India Japan Act East Forum

    - Arrangement between India Post and Japan Post on Administrative Instruction for the Implementation of Cool EMS service

    - India-Japan Investment Promotion Road map between DIPP and METI

    - MOC between METI and the State of Gujarat on ‘Japan-India special programme for Make In India’ in Mandal Bechraj-Khoraj in Gujarat

    - Exchange of RoD on Civil Aviation Cooperation (Open Sky)

    - Agreement for International joint exchange programme between interdisciplinary theoretical and mathematical sciences programme (iTHEMS), RIKEN and National Centres for Biological Sciences (Simons-NCBS)

    - Joint Research Contract between National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science & Technology (AIST), Japan and Department of Biotechnology (DBT)

    - Between DBT and National Institute of Advanced Science & Technology (AIST)

    - International Academic and Sports Exchange between Lakshmibai National Institute of Physical Education (LNIPE)and Nippon Sports Science University, Japan (NSSU)

    - International Academic and Sports Exchange between Sports Authority of India and Nippon Sports Science University, Japan (NSSU)

    - Letter of intent between Lakshmibai National Institute of Physical Education (LNIPE) and University of Tsukuba, Japan

    - Letter of intent between Sports Authority of India and University of Tsukuba, Japan

    - Between RIS and IDE-JETRO for promotion of Cooperation in Research Related Activities

  • 14:08 (IST)

  • 14:06 (IST)

    Abe pins hope on popularising Japanese language in India

    Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that with the signing of MoU on Japanese language, he hopes that the language will find a way among the common people in India.

    He also thanked India for a warm welcome. "I'd like to take this opportunity to thank India and the people of India," he said.

  • 14:04 (IST)

    Abe speaks on ties between India, Japan and US

    "India, Japan and US conducted joint maritime exercise in Malabar for the first time, based on strong ties of trust between Modi and US president Donald Trump. It will further deepen cooperation between India, Japan & the US," Abe said.

  • 14:00 (IST)

  • 13:56 (IST)

    India is transforming, says Modi

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that with initiatives like ease of doing business, Skill India or Make in India show that India is transforming.

    He also announced a delivery service between the two nations to serve the Japanese diaspora in India. "India Post & Japan Post to start a 'cool box service' for Japanese living in India so that they can order their favorite food from Japan, said Modi."

  • 13:52 (IST)

  • 13:50 (IST)

  • 13:49 (IST)

    Modi address India-Japan summit meet

    "I am happy to welcome Shinzo Abe to India. We have met several times on the sidelines of international events. Yesterday, we attended Sabarmati Ashram. Today we went to Gandhi Musuem," said Narendra Modi.

  • 13:42 (IST)

  • 13:40 (IST)

    Exchange of agreements takes place

    The following agreements were exchanged:

    - Japanese Language of India
    - Act East 
    - Record of discussion civil aviation authorities

  • 13:11 (IST)

  • 13:01 (IST)

  • 13:01 (IST)

    Modi, Abe in Dandi Kutir

  • 12:59 (IST)

  • 12:46 (IST)

  • 12:32 (IST)

  • 12:29 (IST)

  • 12:23 (IST)

  • 12:20 (IST)

    What Modi's presence does to Gujarat BJP 

    For the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party in Gujarat, the very presence of Narendra Modi — be it as the chief minister or the prime minister — electrifies party cadres.

    And when he comes calling with a highly ambitious project like the bullet train that promises to collapse the geographical distances between two cousins, Ahmedabad and Mumbai, split only by political boundaries in the sixties, it only adds to the euphoria. And that too, Gujarat goes to a crucial election in December with the BJP increasingly missing the Modi Magic.

  • 12:11 (IST)

  • 11:58 (IST)

  • 11:54 (IST)

  • 11:53 (IST)

    Forget bullet train, real thrust of India-Japan relationship is on defence, China

    Abe's visit to India for the 12th Indo-Japan Annual Summit comes at a particularly interesting time. Both nations are grappling with the trajectory of China's rise and struggling to keep pace with a geopolitical order thrown into turmoil over doubts about America's role as a global security guarantor. And as if the world needed a dash of more uncertainty, the tinpot from North Korea has decided that this is the right time to test a hydrogen bomb and threaten Donald Trump.

    These rapid variables have forced India and Japan to snuggle closer, and both nations appear on the cusp of a major upgradation in bilateral ties. 

  • 11:41 (IST)

    Akie Abe's schedule for the day

    The First Lady of Japan will begin her day by visiting the garden at Sabarmati riverfront. Later, she will be greeted by 18 children singing 'Kem chho, konnichiwa', on her visit to the Indo-Japan Friendship Association (IJFA). The song, penned by IJFA's Mukesh Patel, will be sung by students of  Zydus School of Excellence.

    She will also address students at Gujarat University, where she will speak on climate change, and visit the Vocational Training Unit at Blind People's Association. On her visit to the Japan Information Centre, Akie will inaugurate the Origami Mahotsav and will be served a bullet train ice cream cake.

  • 11:09 (IST)

    Watch parts of Narendra Modi's speech here:

  • 11:07 (IST)

Gujarat will roll out the red carpet for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who will arrive in Ahmedabad on Wednesday on a two-day visit during which he will lay the foundation stone for India's first bullet train project.

The twin cities of Ahmedabad and Gandhinagar, which will host a slew of programmes during the high-profile visit, are all decked up to welcome the foreign dignitary with streets shimmering in fluorescent lights, and hoardings and banners welcoming Abe dotting them.

Robust security arrangements have been put in place for the 12th Indo-Japan Summit and business meet where Japanese companies are likely to announce major investments in Gujarat.

The visit will begin on Wednesday afternoon with an 8 km road show where Abe will be accorded a grand welcome, officials said.

Modi will be present through the road show with Abe with people lining the streets their cavalcade would pass through.

They will visit Sabarmati Ashram and iconic Sidi Saiyyed Mosque in the eastern part of the city famous for its intricate stone lattice work on Wednesday.

Modi will host dinner for Abe at a hotel in the old city area.

Ahmedabad has been recently included in the World Heritage City list. The Japanese prime minister will be given an overview of the heritage of the city in Modi's home state.

On Thursday, Abe and Modi will lay the foundation stone for the high-speed train project between Ahmedabad and Mumbai which is expected to be completed by 2022, and is likely to traverse the distance of over 500 km between in around two hours.

Japan has extended a soft loan for the ambitious project conceptualised by Modi.

The two leaders will hold the 12th Indo-Japan annual Summit meeting at Gandhinagar after which agreements will be exchanged. Later, an India-Japan business plenary meeting will be held.

"We are thankful to the Japanese prime minister for selecting Gujarat for his visit to India," Gujarat chief secretary JN Singh said.

Fifteen agreements will be signed for investments in Gujarat during the visit of the Japanese prime minister, he said.

Abe's spouse Akie Abe will accompany him and also have a busy schedule. She will be visiting a number of places
including an NGO — Blind People's Association.

With inputs from PTI

Updated Date: Sep 14, 2017 18:18 PM

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