CONTRIBUTIONS OF INDIRA GANDHI IN CEMENTING INDO-RUSSIAN TIES HAILED

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The significant contributions of Indira Gandhi, an outstanding politician and leader of the Indian National Congress Party, were hailed by speakers of a seminar “The Role of Indira Gandhi in Strengthening Indo-Russian Relations”, at the Russian Centre of Science and Culture (RCSC) in New Delhi on November 20, 2017. The commemorative event, dedicated to the 100th birth anniversary of Indira Gandhi, was organised jointly by the RCSC and India-Russia Friendship Society (New Delhi).

Paying rich tributes to Indira Gandhi, former Speaker of Lok Sabha (Indian Parliament), Mrs Meira Kumar stated that Indiraji enhanced the image of India as a peace-long vibrant nation before the world through consistent efforts, firmly upholding the policy of co-existence, non-violence, peace, harmony and development. With an emphatic reference to the trustworthy, mutually-beneficial, time-tested friendship and cooperation with the Soviet Union, she noted that Indiraji was very much forthright in associating with Russia, distinct from other countries, as a trusted strategic partner in her foreign policy perception. Mrs Meira Kumar hailed the historic 1971 Indo-Soviet Treaty of Peace, Friendship and Cooperation, which not only enabled India to achieve a glorious victory in the Indo-Pak war resulting in the birth of Bangladesh, but also served as a bulwark in the security of South-East Asia.

Earlier, making his welcoming remarks, Mr Fedor Rozovskiy, Director, Russian Centre of  Science and Culture, paid glowing tributes to Indira Gandhi describing her as a highly revered Indian leader and a great friend of Russia, who made Indo-Russian relations attain the highest pinnacle. Touching upon the unique distinction of the occasion, Mr Rozovskiy referred to the conspicuous coincidence of the birth of Indira Gandhi and the occurrence of the 1917 Great October Revolution in the same year. He also said that interestingly, in an evident appreciation and adoration to her, several parents in Russian families named their new-born babies after her - “Indira”.

With immense reverence to Indira Gandhi, Mr Jai Prakash Agarwal, noted Congress leader and former M.P. (Lok Sabha) and former President of DPCC., described her as an eminent international figure and multi-dimensional personality, who valiantly encountered all the challenges that came by, standing her ground with an unblemished track record of political life. Distinguished herself as the closest friend of Russia, she saw to it that Indo-Russian relations prosper and strengthen manifold in all spheres of life making the period of her premiership a golden phase of bilateral ties. Mr Agarwal said that the very concept “India is Indira, and Indira is India” found eloquent expression in word and deed.

Expressing his satisfaction over sharing his observation on Indira Gandhi at the commemorative event, Mr Sergey Karmalito, Senior Counsellor, Embassy of the Russian Federation in India, stressed that it was imperative in the present context to follow the legacy of the remarkable Indian leader, a close friend of Russia, who made India a dynamic nation worth emulating for other countries of the world. Indira Gandhi had an excellent rapport and working relationship with Soviet leaders which paved the way for a steady and stable bilateral link-up in crucial sectors. Mr Karmalito, reviewing the multifarious bilateral cooperation, recalled Indira Gandhi’s initiative in streamlining the country’s infrastructure and ensuring progressive developments in the fields of economy, trade, science and technology, space science, energy and defence.

Indo-Russian Friendship Society felicitated the distinguished guests and prominent social activists by presenting souvenirs.

Dr R. B. Singh, General-Secretary, India-Russia Friendship Society (New Delhi), proposed a vote of thanks.

After the official part of the function, a play “India and Indira” was staged to the great appreciation of the large gathering.

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Smt Meira Kumar, former Speaker, Lok Sabha (Indian Parliament)
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Mr Sergey Karmalito, Senior Counsellor, Embassy of the Russian Federation in India
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Mr J.P. Agarwal Congress leader and former M.P. and President, DPCC
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Dr R. B. Singh, General Secretary, India-Russia Friendship Society (New Delhi)
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