Modi in Saudi Arabia: PM gifts King Salman miniature of Kerala mosque built by Arab traders

When Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Saudi Arabia's King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud met in Riyadh during the former’s two-day official visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, from 2-3 April, it was natural that they'll discuss issues such as maritime security in the Gulf and the Indian Ocean, and bilateral trade. Heads of states, responsible for the development and security of their countries, usually hold long talks, promoting their interests. However, amidst all this, what was special was the acknowledgement of each other’s achievements and culture.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was conferred Saudi Arabia's highest civilian honour, the King Abdulaziz Sash. Image courtesy: Twitter/@PMOIndia

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was conferred Saudi Arabia's highest civilian honour, the King Abdulaziz Sash. Image courtesy: Twitter/@PMOIndia

On Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was conferred Saudi Arabia’s highest civilian honour — the King Abdulaziz Sash by King Salman at the Royal Court. This was preceded by Modi gifting King Salman a gold-plated miniature replica of the Cheraman Juma Masjid situated in Kerala.

Located in Thrissur district, the Cheraman Juma Masjid is believed to be the first mosque built in India by Arab traders around 629 AD. The Prime Minister, in a series of messages, conveyed the significance of the mosque in highlighting the important place that Islam has in the Indian subcontinent.

Talking about the significance of the mosque, the Prime Minister’s official website read, “According to oral tradition, Cheraman Perumal was the Chera King and a contemporary of the Holy Prophet who went to Arabia and embraced Islam after meeting the Holy Prophet at Mecca. Some years later, he sent letters to his relatives and the ruling chieftains of Malabar through his friends Malik bin Dinar and Malik bin Habib who, along with their companions, were then given permission by the local rulers to build the mosque at Kodungallu”.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in a press note talking about the Saudi’s highest civilian honour being conferred upon the PM said, “The BJP sees this as yet another instance of the global respect and appreciation of the guiding principle of Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas and the inclusive development efforts of Shri Narendra Modi. This honour conferred by Saudi Arabia is also another recognition of the progressive and dynamic foreign policy of the NDA government under the leadership of Shri Narendra Modi”.

It added, “Under the leadership of Shri Narendra Modi, the NDA government’s foreign policy has led to record foreign investment coming to India and enhanced India’s prestige on the world stage. Relations with existing friends have significantly improved and at the same time avenues of cooperation with other regions and nations have been accelerated at a historical pace. At the same time, India has risen to the occasion and helped every Indian in duress be it in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya and Yemen to name a few”.

Updated Date: Apr 04, 2016 20:37 PM

Also See