Reuven Rivlin arrives in Mumbai for 6-day visit

Rivlin is accompanied by a large delegation, including businessman and academics

Reuven Rivlin arrives in Mumbai for 6-day visit

On Monday, Israel President Reuven Rivlin arrived in Mumbai on a six-day visit to enhance the bilateral relationship between India and Israel. He termed India as a "close friend."

Rivlin is accompanied by a large delegation including businessman and academics. He will share the stage with President Pranab Mukherjee to inaugurate an agro-tech conference in Chandigarh.

He will also hold deliberations with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.

Rivlin will pay tributes at 2008 Mumbai terror attacks site and lay floral wreaths on the memorial of Mahatma Gandhi. He will hold meetings with officials and Jewish community leaders along with his wife.

"I am departing now on an important visit to India, an important ally, and close friend of Israel, a state with whom we have much in common," Rivlin said before leaving for India.

"Israel and India are both countries of innovation and of inspiration. Countries that have ancient traditions, but have built strong and thriving hi-tech economies, and now celebrate 25 years of diplomatic relations. This visit is a sign of the strong relations and friendship between our peoples, and I hope will plant the seeds for that friendship to grow closer and closer," he said.

Representatives of 13 Israeli academic institutions are there in the accompanying delegation. It is expected that these representatives sign 15 separate agreements with Indian academic institutions.

Yaffa Zilbershats, head the Council for Higher Education's budget committee said: "The issue of international cooperation in higher education and the expansion of academic ties between Israel and the world - in particular with India - is one of the central aims of the multi-year plan for higher education in Israel,"

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