French President Emmanuel Macron invited as Chief Guest to India's 2024 Republic Day celebrations

World Friday 22/December/2023 13:06 PM
French President Emmanuel Macron invited as Chief Guest to India's 2024 Republic Day celebrations

New Delhi: The President of France, Emmanuel Macron, has been invited to attend India's January 26 Republic Day celebrations in 2024, according to sources.

Previously, the two leaders met in July during PM Modi's visit to France to attend the Bastille Day Parade. PM Modi participated in the Bastille Day celebrations as the Guest of Honour.

He had visited France at the invitation of French President Macron.

PM Modi visited France to mark the 25th anniversary of the strategic partnership between India and France. on Friday. "To mark the 25th anniversary of the India-France Strategic Partnership, a 241-member tri-service Indian armed forces contingent led by a military band also participated in the Parade," the PMO said in a statement.

The Indian Army contingent was led by the Punjab Regiment, followed by a complement from the Rajputana Rifles Regiment.

During the parade, the Indian military contingent marched to the patriotic tune of 'Sare Jahan Se Accha,' while a squadron of Indian Air Force (IAF) Rafale fighters participated in a flypast over the Champs-Elysees at the Bastille Day Parade. Rafale Jets of the Indian Air Force, from the 101 Squadron from Hashimara, formed a part of the flypast during the parade.

July 14 marks the anniversary of the storming of the Bastille prison on July 14, 1789, during the French Revolution, which symbolizes the democratic values of 'Liberty, Equality and Fraternity', the central theme of both the Indian and French constitutions.

Meanwhile, French President Macron also visited India in September this year to attend the G20 Summit which was held under India's Presidency.

President Macron and Prime Minister Modi held a bilateral meeting in Delhi on September 10, on the sidelines of the G20 summit. Following the meeting, PM Modi said they reaffirmed their commitment to take India-France relations to newer heights of progress.

PM Modi had posted on X, "A very productive lunch meeting with President @EmmanuelMacron. We discussed a series of topics and look forward to ensuring India-France relations scale new heights of progress."

The two leaders reiterated their commitment to strengthen defence cooperation through partnership in the design and expansion of production in India and called for early finalisation of the Defence Industrial Roadmap.

This is, notably the 6th time, a French leader will be the Chief guest at Republic Day celebrations here in the national capital.

Prior to Macron, former French Prime Minister Jacques Chirac was the Chief guest on India's Republic Day celebrations in 1976 and 1998, and former Presidents Valery Giscard d'Estaing, Nicolas Sarkozy, and Francois Hollande in the years 1980, 2008 and 2016 respectively.

India and France cooperate closely in various sectors, including defence, space, civil nuclear, trade, investment, education, culture and people-to-people ties.