Ram Nath Kovind, the first Indian President to visit St Vincent, has arrived on a three-day state visit to the country.
President Ram Nath Kovind addressed the Indian origin community in St Vincent on Thursday as he renamed ‘Calder Road’ to ‘India Drive’.
President Kovind lauded the Indian community for their contribution to the development of St. Vincent and the Grenadines as their adopted home.
“I am glad to know that members of the Indian community living here have adopted this land as their own. They live in peace and harmony with other communities and are making rich contributions to the development of St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG). As a result of their positive approach, the Indian diaspora commands respect and affection in SVG,” he said while addressing the Indian diaspora here.
“The declaration of 1st June as Indian Arrival Day in Saint Vincent and 7th October as Indian Heritage Day marks the importance that this country attaches to its Indian connection,” he elaborated.
Terming India’s partnership with St. Vincent and the Grenadines was based on the spirit of universal brotherhood, President Kovind made a strong pitch for a slew of investments in the country.
“Our developmental partnership with Saint Vincent & the Grenadines is based on the spirit of universal brotherhood. We want to support our brothers and sisters here, in building a stronger Saint Vincent & the Grenadines, with infrastructure projects that add value to the well-being of the people,” he explained.
President Kovind and PM Gonsalves witnessed the signing of two agreements
India and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines today signed agreements to exchange info on any person or companies, ownership of companies etc. held by banks and financial institutions etc and an agreement on the exchange of information and assistance in the collection of taxes.
Ram Nath Kovind arrives in SVG, first Indian President to visit
He will meet with his counterpart, Governor-General Susan Dougan, as well as Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves and other dignitaries during his state visit. He will also address parliament.
President Kovind would be hosted by the Governor-General at a banquet, while Prime Minister Gonsalves would host a working lunch and reception for him.
During his visit, President Kovind is expected to sign several agreements.
In Calder, he will attend a ceremony to rename a street ‘India Drive’. He will also plant a sapling of sandalwood in the botanical garden.
On the island, Kovind will tour several development projects undertaken by India and speak with the Indian community.
Under the framework of the Cricket Association, the Indian President will also present cricket kits to aspiring young cricketers. He will journey to the Grenadine island of Canouan for a special meeting with PM Gonsalves.
Kovind will be in St. Vincent and the Grenadines between 18-21 May.