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SAARC leaders invited to Prime Minister elect's swearing-in

Wednesday, 21 May 2014 - 5:00pm IST | Agency: PTI

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For the first time, SAARC Heads of State and Government including Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Sri Lanka President President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Bangladesh Premier Sheikh Hasina have been invited to Narendra Modi's swearing-in as Prime Minister on May 26.

"Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh has written to SAARC counterparts inviting their leaders to attend swearing-in ceremony on 26th May," the Spokesperson in the External Affairs Ministry said on Wednesday.

Apart from Sharif, Rajapaksa and Hasina, other SAARC leaders are -Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai, Bhutan Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay, Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala and Maldivian President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom.

This is for the first time these foreign leaders are invited to a Prime Minister's swearing-in ceremony. While some of the leaders including Karzai, Rajapaksa and Tobgay have indicated that they may attend the ceremony, others are yet to respond.

Immediately after BJP's landslide victory, world leaders including US President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin called Modi to congratulate him. Modi through his twitter handle thanked the leaders for their wishes.

Modi will be administered the oath as 15th Prime Minister of the country by President Pranab Mukherjee at the forecourt of the historic Rashtrapati Bhavan here which will be attended by over 3000 guests. BJP had a landslide victory in the just-concluded polls to elect members of the 16th Lok Sabha and crossed the majority mark of 272 in the 543-member House on its own for the first time in its history.

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