President Rivlin receives official state welcome in India
(Communicated by the President’s Spokesperson)
President Reuven Rivlin this morning (Tuesday) opened his state visit to India as he was welcomed in an official ceremony by President Pranab Mukherjee of India at the Presidential Residence in New Delhi. President and First Lady Rivlin were greeted by horse guards who escorted their motorcade. The delegations then stood for the playing of both the Israeli and Indian national anthems, before the President went on to review a guard of honor.
The President commented, “I am very honored and pleased to be the guest of Preside Mukherjee. He visited us a year ago and we are very privileged and honored to be today here in your great country, in India. Thank you so very much for welcoming me Mr. President.”
The President then went on to lay a wreath, and as is customary sprinkled petals, on the tomb of Mahatma Gandhi. At the end of the ceremony, the President wrote in the official guest book quoting the verse from Leviticus (19:18), “Love thy neighbor as thyself”.
The President said, “In the spirit of this place, I wrote the quote ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself’, a fitting aphorism for all humanitarians in the world, and among them Gandhi himself.” When asked on his impressions of the visit, the President said, “Israel and India have a firm alliance, between two peoples and two states with illustrious and greatly inspirational pasts. Similarly in this place, where the old world meets the new, one can feel all these things and see how they are expressed in the visit. I am hopeful that my visit will serve to deepen the ties between us and this wonderful people, with whom we have so much in common.”
President Rivlin then went on to hold a working meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and a series of meetings with other key officials. This evening, the President and First Lady will attend a state dinner in honor of their visit.