Press Esc to close
Saturday 07 May 2016
News updated at 3:18 AM IST
Weather
Max: 35.5°C
Min : 24.9°C
In Bengaluru
Sunny day

Thai PM to be chief guest on India's Republic Day

Last updated: 02 December, 2011
New Delhi, Dec 2 (IANS)

Building on the upward swing in New Delhi's Look East policy, India will host Thailand's first woman and youngest Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra as the guest of honour at the Republic Day parade Jan 26, 2012.

This is the third consecutive time India has invited a leader from an East Asian country to be the chief guest at the Republic Day parade, an honour accorded to special friends with which New Delhi wishes to accelerate its diplomatic and economic ties.

This year, India hosted Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono as the chief quest at the Republic Day function. Last year, the honour went to South Korean President Lee Myung-bak.

This is also only the second time in over half a century that a woman head of state or government would be the chief guest at the Republic Day parade. Queen Elizabeth II came to India in 1961 as the chief guest.

The 44-year-old Shinawatra, a businessperson and politician, became not just Thailand's first female prime minister, but also the youngest prime minister of that country in over 60 years when she assumed office in August after a landslide electoral victory.

Shinawatra's visit comes at a time when India and Thailand are fast-tracking their negotiations for a comprehensive Free Trade Agreement and are hard at work to seal crucial agreements like an extradition treaty, a mutual legal assistance treaty in civil and commercial matters and an agreement on transfer of sentenced persons.

Officials are hoping that some of these pacts may be signed during Shinawatra's visit.  
The state visit by then Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva in April provided an added momentum to bilateral ties, which are growing stronger by the day.

Bilateral trade is expected to touch $10 billion next year.

Indian companies have invested $2 billion in Thailand and companies from that country invested nearly $1 billion in India. People-to-people contacts are stronger than ever with over 800,000 Indians visiting Thailand every year. Roughly around the same number of Thai tourists visit India.

The two sides are also discussing ambitious connectivity plans like  a proposed trilateral highway project linking India and Thailand through Myanmar that is set to give a boost to New Delhi's ties with the East Asia region.

Shinawatra's visit will also put the spotlight on India's blossoming ties with Southeast Asian and East Asian countries and will take place in a year when New Delhi will host the first commemorative India-ASEAN summit. In October, the leaders of Vietnam and Myanmar visited India in quick succession.

Last month, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh interacted with leaders of the region at the India-ASEAN and East Asia summits in Bali in Indonesia. 

The visit of the Thai prime minister to India will also be closely watched by China, which is wary of New Delhi's growing diplomatic and economic clout in Southeast Asian countries.


Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Lightning strikes across the sky above homes in south Walla Walla, Wash., Wednesday, May 4, 2016...

Lightning strikes across the sky above homes in south Walla Walla, Wash., Wednesday, May 4, 2016...

Labourers thrash paddy crop in a field on the outskirts of Ahmedabad...

Labourers thrash paddy crop in a field on the outskirts of Ahmedabad...

A youth blocks a road during a public curfew called by the Joint Committee on Inner Line Permit...

A youth blocks a road during a public curfew called by the Joint Committee on Inner Line Permit...

A security person with a sniffer dog inspect two crude bombs recovered near a polling boot...

A security person with a sniffer dog inspect two crude bombs recovered near a polling boot...

Students celebrate their success after announcement of ICSE board results in Patna on Friday...

Students celebrate their success after announcement of ICSE board results in Patna on Friday...

BSF men take out a march ahead of Assembly elections in Kozhikode on Friday...

BSF men take out a march ahead of Assembly elections in Kozhikode on Friday...

A collapsed pandal at Simhastha Mahakumbha Mela in Ujjain on Friday, a day after thunderstorm...

A collapsed pandal at Simhastha Mahakumbha Mela in Ujjain on Friday, a day after thunderstorm...

Jadavpur University Students chasing the car of film director Vivek Agnihotri to show him black...

Jadavpur University Students chasing the car of film director Vivek Agnihotri to show him black...

A Bicycle rider are struggle to move in water logged road at K R Circle during the heavy rain in...

A Bicycle rider are struggle to move in water logged road at K R Circle during the heavy rain in...

Mumbai Indians stars Kieron Pollard, Harbhajan Singh, Ricky Ponting and Rohit Sharma at Etihad...

Mumbai Indians stars Kieron Pollard, Harbhajan Singh, Ricky Ponting and Rohit Sharma at Etihad...