Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that he is “shocked and saddened beyond words” at the tragic demise of one of his “dearest friends”, Shinzo Abe, the former Prime Minister of Japan who died after being shot during a speech in Nara, Japan on Friday.
Calling him a towering global statesman, an outstanding leader and a remarkable administrator, PM Modi said that Abe dedicated his life to make Japan and the world a better place.
PM Modi recalled that his association with Abe goes back many years, having known the Japanese leader since his long stint as Gujarat Chief Minister. “And, our friendship continued after I became PM. His sharp insights on economy and global affairs always made a deep impression on me,” he said.
The Indian PM had recently met Shinzo Abe along with another former Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori in Tokyo on May 24. Abe was taking over as the Chairperson of the Japan-India Association (JIA) which was established in 1903 and is one of the oldest friendship associations in the country.
“During my recent visit to Japan, I had the opportunity to meet Mr. Abe again and discuss many issues. He was witty and insightful as always. Little did I know that this would be our last meeting. My heartfelt condolences to his family and the Japanese people,” PM Modi said in a series of tweets Friday afternoon.
The Special Strategic and Global Partnership between India and Japan, two major democracies in Asia, strengthened as the friendship between the two leaders blossomed ever since Modi visited Tokyo in 2014 for the first time after becoming PM.
Abe said that in order to build a win-win relationship through synergies between Modinomics and Abenomics he would like to set a common goal of doubling Japan’s direct investment and the number of Japanese companies in India by 2019.
(The story has been published via a syndicated feed.)