ASTANA : Minister of State for External Affairs Smt. Meenakashi Lekhi (MoS) led the Indian delegation as the Special Envoy of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to the 6th Summit of the Conference of Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) held in Astana (Kazakhstan) on 12-13 October 2022.
In her statement at the plenary of the CICA Summit, MoS highlighted ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ as a guiding principle of India’s approach to international relations, including in the context of India’s contribution to the fight against Covid-19. She reaffirmed India’s support for CICA’s initiatives and called for greater efforts by CICA member states to counter all forms of terrorism.
On the sidelines of the CICA Summit, MoS met the Vice President of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam H.E. Ms. Vo Thi Anh Xuan and discussed various issues of bilateral cooperation.
During her visit, MoS unveiled a life-size statue of Mahatma Gandhi in Astana in the presence of Kazakh dignitaries. This is the second statue of Mahatma Gandhi installed in Kazakhstan. MoS also interacted with the ICCR and ITEC Alumni from Kazakhstan and highlighted their role in further strengthening the vibrant people-to-people contacts between the two countries.
MoS planted a “tree of friendship” at the campus of the Astana Medical University (AMU) and interacted with the Indian students at AMU. She held discussions with the Kazakh Vice-Minister of Health H.E. Mr. Zhandos Konysovich Burkitbayev on issues related to the welfare of Indian students in Kazakhstan.
This year marks the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Kazakhstan. The visit of MoS has imparted a fresh momentum to the long standing strategic partnership between the two countries.