My political journey has been identical to Vladimir Putin's: PM Modi tells Russian media

Prime Minister Narendra Modi told the Russian media on Wednesday that his political journey was almost identical to that of Putin.

By Manisha Singh | Last Updated: Dec 23, 2015, 16:55 PM IST
My political journey has been identical to Vladimir Putin's: PM Modi tells Russian media
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Delhi: Describing Russia as India’s 'unwavering friend', Prime Minister Narendra Modi told the Russian media on Wednesday that his political journey was almost identical to that of Putin.

In an interview to Russina news agency TAAS, he said, "I am going on a state visit for the first time, but I have been meeting President Putin frequently. In a way, mine and President Putin's political journey has moved identically. He took over in 2000, I took over in 2001. And in 2001, I visited as member of the Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's delegation, in capacity of a chief minister. So that was my first meeting. When I go to Russia, there is a thought in my mind that I have delayed the visit a bit." 

On Indo-Russia ties he said, "The relations between India and Russia are linked together through the water, land and sky. Our defense source, defense power, in all these Russia is associated with us for all those years. Similarly, in the global environment, in times of crisis, where you need a friend, Russia has always stood with us... And in this sense, our relationship, in one way is a new level of strategic partnership, which is taking us in that direction."

At the same time PM Modi was all praises for the Russian President, "The world knows him as a strong leader. He is a decisive person. And the best thing is that he knows how to maintain relations... Between me and President Putin, trust is a very big strength, confidence is a very big strength. Secondly it is openness. There are those who think something, but say something else. This I have not experienced with President Putin. What he thinks, he says in clear words. You might like it or not like it, he is not tense about it. He explains with a feeling of oneness and in a friendly manner. It is a fact that he has provided excellent leadership to Russia over the years. Provided leadership, brought it out of economic crisis and filled strength in Russia after its break down... India always remembers Russia as a friend. But President Putin has filled new energy in this relationship, filled new enthusiasm and I see him as a friend."

PM Modi today left on a two-day visit to Russia. Tomorrow, Modi and Putin will interact with a group of Indian and Russian CEOs in Kremlin.

The Prime Minister's engagements in Moscow also include addressing a gathering of 'Friends of India' and around 3,000 people are expected to attend the event tomorrow.

Before his departure, PM Modi wrote on his Facebook post: "My visit will deepen the cooperation between India and Russia in the economic, energy and security spheres. We also want to increase cooperation in science and technology, mining among other sectors. Trade ties between India and Russia can increase even further, to benefit not only our two nations but also the world."