India to set up chair for Buddhist studies in Cambodia

New Delhi: India will set up a chair of Buddhist and Sanskrit Studies at Cambodia`s Preah Sihanouk Raja Buddhist University for four years from 2011 to strengthen bilateral ties between the two countries, it was officially announced here.

The memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed in Phnom Penh between visiting Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) president Karan Singh and Cambodian Religion Minister Min Khin on behalf of the ICCR and the university Monday, an ICCR statement said.

Karan Singh, who arrived in the Cambodian capital July 2, also met former king Norodom Sihanouk and his consort Monineath Sihanouk at the royal palace Monday.

During the meeting, Sihanouk, who had abdicated in favour of his son, and Karan Singh traced historical and civilizational roots between India and Cambodia.

The former king and the queen remembered their visits to India and their association with Jawaharlal Nehru. Karan Singh acknowledged the significant role played by Norodom Sihanouk as a great stabilising force in Cambodia.

The ICCR president was conferred an honorary D.Litt by Preah Sihanouk Raja Buddhist University in recognition of his contribution to the India-Cambodia friendship and intellectual achievements.


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