On Sunday 26 January, Indian Ambassador to Egypt Rahul Kulshreshth and Mrs Shefali Kulshresth held a celebration to mark the 71st Republic Day of India.
On this occasion, he applauded the current cooperation between the two countries, reiterating his country’s eagerness for more coordination with Egypt.
At the Conrad Hotel in Cairo, Kulshreshth welcomed guests including the ambassadors of the USA, Germany, Australia, Philippines, Canada, Finland, and South Korea.
The reception party was also attended by Ali Mosselhy, Egypt's minister for home trade, ambassador Hani Selim, assistant foreign minister for asian affairs, ambassador Mohamed Hegazy, foreign affairs advisor to the minister of local development, former chairman of the General Authority of Suez Canal Economic Zone Ahmed Darwish, Staff Major General Mamdouh Gouda Aly, and renowned Egyptian author Mohamed Salmawy.
In his inaugural speech, Ambassador Kulshreshth said, "Relations between India and Egypt are rooted in antiquity. Some scholars have even suggested that Queen Hatshepsut sent ships to India. What is more certain is that maritime contacts between India and Egypt existed several centuries before Christ. Mahatma Gandhi, as we all know, had a special connection with Egypt. Gandhiji was impressed by Egypt’s nationalist leader Mustafa Kamel Pasha, and Mahatma Gandhi and Saad Zaghloul shared a common vision for independence. The friendship between Nehru and Nasser is of course well known. India and Egypt worked together in NAM and the United Nations.
“In the more recent past, two visits by His Excellency President El-Sisi to India have provided renewed impulse to bilateral ties. Our leaders have agreed to create a new partnership for a new era. It is indeed a matter of satisfaction that while bilateral ties between India and Egypt are marked by warmth and friendship as they have always been, India and Egypt also continue to share close political understanding and similar perceptions on bilateral, regional and global issues. Indian foreign policy has been driven by the impulse to share India’s experience, skills, knowledge and expertise with other developing countries.
“The ITEC (Indian Technical and Economic Programme), launched on 15 September 1964, is a shining example of South-South partnership in capacity building. Every year, 200 ITEC slots are assigned for Egypt for training in 54 institutes, offering courses in 280 disciplines including IT, renewable energy, English language, skill development and employment generation. It is also our approach that development cooperation incorporating the idea of partnership should be guided by mutual benefit, by the priorities of our partners, and should reach out to people and make a difference to their lives.
"Last year, we capped the year-long celebrations of the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi with a seminar and photo exhibition held in collaboration with the League of Arab States. Later, on 6 November 2019, Egypt Post released a commemorative stamp on Mahatma Gandhi. A bronze bust of Mahatma Gandhi was also unveiled at Al-Horreya Park in Cairo. We take this opportunity to express our gratitude to the government of the Arab Republic of Egypt and the people of Egypt for making the celebrations a resounding success.
"I take this opportunity to convey my gratitude to the government and people of Egypt for their continued support and cooperation. I also thank and commend the Indian community in Egypt. They have been ambassadors for India, have earned good will and respect, and helped in strengthening ties between India and Egypt. Good wishes to all Indians and friends of India in Egypt on this joyous occasion," the ambassador said.