Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi along with Pakistan’s Prime Minister Mamnoon Hussain attended the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation’s summit (SCO) as a full member for the very first time.

Narendra Modi stressed on the importance of good connectivity with neighboring countries and the fact that growing digitalization is changing the way we connect. It is important to change accordingly which is India’s main concern.

Indian PM Narendra Modi at SCO, China.

While speaking at the restricted session of the SCO Summit, Prime Minister Modi talked about the notion of SECURE: ‘S’ for security for citizens, ‘E’ for economic development, ‘C’ for connectivity in the region, ‘U’ for unity, ‘R’ for respect of sovereignty and integrity, and ‘E for environment protection.

Modi said “India is committed to extending full assistance to contribute towards a successful outcome of the Summit.”

The SCO presently consists of eight member countries which represent around 42 percent of the world’s population and contributes 20 percent of the global GDP.

The Prime Minister stated the fact that only 6 percent of India’s foreign tourists are from SCO countries but these facts can be doubled.

“Increasing awareness of our shared cultures can help boost this number. We will organize an SCO food festival and a Buddhist festival in India,” he said.

After the summit, Modi held nearly half a dozen bilateral meetings with leaders of other SCO countries. However, there was no bilateral meeting between Modi and Hussain.

Both the presidents merely shook hands after the press conference of SCO. This exchange of pleasantry was addressed by Chinese President Xi Jinping. The ties between the countries still remain knotted.

The relations between India and Pakistan had strained even further after an attack by Pakistan-based terror organizations on an army camp in Uri in Jammu and Kashmir in 2016. The ties took a severely tampered post-sentencing of Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav by a military court in April last year.

India, in various polygonal platforms, has been raising the issue of Pakistan-funded terrorism so that it will build pressure on Islamabad to take apart the terror base operating from that country.

The summit of 19th SAARC Summit was called off after Bangladesh, Bhutan and Afghanistan declined to participate in the Islamabad meet following the boycott by India after the Suri attack.

In his address at this summit too, Modi referred to the situation in Afghanistan and talked about the challenge of terrorism and its effects.

(With PTI inputs)

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