BIMSTEC members, leaders of Kyrgyzstan and Mauritius invited to PM Modi’s swearing-in on May 30

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Like SAARC leaders last time, heads of government from neighbouring BIMSTEC countries are likely to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his second term on May 30.

As of now, there is no indication of Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan being invited.

MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said, leaders of member states of Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) will attend the swearing in. Member countries of BIMSTEC include Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Thailand besides India.

The Ministry of External Affairs said the invitations are “in line with government’s focus on its ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy”. President of the Kyrgyz Republic Sooronbay Jeenbekov and Prime Minister of Mauritius Pravind Jugnauth have also been invited, ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar added.

In 2014 when Modi won his first term, all the SAARC leaders, including the then Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif attended the swearing in as part of invitations extended to all the member countries of the south Asian grouping.

But relations with Pakistan soured mid-term and hit its nadir after the Pulwama attack in February which was followed by India’s aerial strikes on terror camps in Balakot in Pakistan.

“The President will administer the oath of office and secrecy to the Prime Minister and other members of the Union council of ministers at 7pm on May 30, 2019, at Rashtrapati Bhavan,” read the statement issued on Sunday.

President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday designated Modi as the next Prime Minister and asked him to form the new government.

The NDA has a strength of 353 MPs in the 543-member Lok Sabha out of which the BJP has a majority of 303 MPs.

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