Opinion

Fiji All Over India Media

The Indian media contingent that accompanied Prime Minister Narendra Modi was  a          b lessing to Fijians. In more ways than one, they showcased our beautiful country and its people to
21 Nov 2014 07:50
Fiji All Over India Media
Prime Ministers Voreqe Bainimarama and Narendra Modi with their official delegations on Wednesday. Photo: Ronald Kumar

The Indian media contingent that accompanied Prime Minister Narendra Modi was  a          b lessing to Fijians.

In more ways than one, they showcased our beautiful country and its people to the Indian subcontinent and the rest of the world.

Different media agencies covered different angles to the  one-day visit. Several outlets covered Fiji’s potential to be a hub for further co-operation in India’s impressive space programme.

Here are some extracts from online coverage by various Indian media outlets.

Times of India

India and Fiji on Wednesday signed three agreements on Wednesday even as PM Narendra Modi announced visa on arrival for Fiji people.

Addressing the Fijian parliament, PM Modi called Fiji a leader in the region and highlighted the need to make make travel easier between the two countries.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi also announced a $5 million fund to promote small business and village enterprises in Fiji, after his talks with Fijian counterpart Frank Bainimarama.

“I regard Fiji as an important partner for India. We have deep and enduring ties of history and culture. Fiji is an influential voice in the Pacific Region and the developing world, and our partner in multilateral institutions,” PM Modi said after his meeting with Frank Bainimarama.

“We face many common global challenges. We have shared interests in peace and cooperation in our inter-linked ocean regions,” the PM said.

Calling for a stronger co-operation between the two countries, Modi said, “Our bilateral relations and international partnership has been strong. But, we are also aware that the relationship has at times been adrift; and that our cooperation should be much stronger than it is.So, I see this visit as an opportunity to renew an old relationship and lay the foundation for a strong partnership in the future.”

Other Indian media outlets focused on Fiji’s leadership in the region and opportunities for continued co-operation between the two countries.

Indo-Asian News Service

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi Wednesday proposed that Fiji could become the hub for India’s regional co-operation in space as he announced visa on arrival for Fijians and two Lines of Credit totaling $75 million.

In an address to the Fiji parliament, Modi, the first Indian prime minister to visit the Pacific island nation in 33 years, also proposed help to build a digital Fiji.

He announced a Line of Credit of $70 million for a co-generation power plant at Rarawai Sugar Mill and another $5 million for upgrading the sugar industry in Fiji.

He also offered India’s expertise and assistance in the agriculture and offered India’s help in developing Fiji’s dairy industry.

He said that both could expand trade in areas like fisheries, textiles and garments, and gems and jewellery and announced that India is setting up a centre of excellence in information technology in Fiji.

OneIndia

Prime Minister Narendra Modi acknowledged the role played by the South Pacific Island nation in the success of India’s Mars mission in the very first attempt and offered to make it the hub for regional collaboration in space. Utilising his visit to Fiji, Modi made it a point to express India’s gratitude in this regard at every event he addressed during his day-long visit to this country – a joint media interaction after talks with his Fijian counterpart, at the Fijian Parliament and at the Fiji National University. “I want to convey a special word of gratitude from the people of India for hosting Indian scientists for tracking India’s mars mission earlier this year. Together we made history,” he said at the media interaction.

The Indian media have also highlighted Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimara’s criticism of the parliamentary boycott by SODELPA as ‘unacceptable behaviour.’

Zee News

The Fijian opposition Social Democratic Liberal Party (SODELPA) on Wednesday boycotted the address to the Fijian Parliament by visiting Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, for which Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama apologised terming it an “inexcusable behaviour”.

At the special session of Parliament ahead of Modi’s address, Bainimarama apologised for the opposition boycott: “Unfortunately, the Opposition has chosen to boycott this session to protest what they mistakenly believe was an attempt to exclude them from these meetings by boycotting this session. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

“I apologise to you, Prime Minister Modi, on behalf of the people of Fiji, for this inexcusable behaviour, which does not have anything to do with the relations between our countries. It only shows that some of us have some lessons to learn about democracy, statecraft, and nationhood,” he said.

Earlier, SODEPLA leader Ro Teimumu Kepa told Fiji media she was disappointed to hear that the Fiji prime minister’s vote of thanks would not include mention of her as Leader of the Opposition.

India Today

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday proposed that Fiji could become the hub for India’s regional co-operation in space.

The prime minister announced visa on arrival for nationals of all Pacific island-countries – Cook Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Nauru, Kiribati, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Samoa, Niue, Palau, Micronesia, Marshall Islands, Fiji and Papua New Guinea. Modi is the first Indian PM to visit the Pacific.

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