The newly appointed High Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka, Mr. Gopal Baglay has paid a courtesy call on President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at the Presidential Secretariat this morning (29).
He presented his credential to President via a video conferencing ceremony on May 14, marking a historic moment in Sri Lanka’s diplomatic relations.
During the discussion that followed, both President Rajapaksa and the Indian Envoy have reaffirmed the commitment of the two nations to further strengthening bilateral relations, while exploring new avenues of cooperation, the President’s Media Division (PMD) said in a statement.
President Rajapaksa, recalling his cordial telephone conversation with the Indian leader last Saturday (23), has thanked the Government of India and its people for the generous assistance extended to Sri Lanka during the prevailing difficult period.
Mr. Baglay, conveying greetings from Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has commended President Rajapaksa for his leadership in the successful battle against COVID-19 pandemic.
President and the Indian High Commissioner have stressed the need to expedite the implementation of already agreed joint projects for the benefit of both countries. Areas such as tertiary education, tourism, information and communication technology, agriculture and agri-based products were mentioned for enhancing bilateral cooperation.
The Indian High Commissioner has reiterated that India is ready to provide more opportunities for Sri Lankan scholars to study in India in their chosen fields.
President Rajapaksa has pointed out the need to develop people to people relations in addition to economic and trade cooperation.
Both Sri Lankan President and Indian envoy agreed that in order to overcome challenges posed by COVID-19 pandemic, mutually beneficial cooperation between countries of the region should be consolidated.
Principal Advisor to the President Lalith Weeratunga was also present at the discussion, the PMD said.