Video: Join India's development march, Modi tells diaspora in Bahrain
RAPTUROUS WELCOME: India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi greets people before addressing the Indian Community at the Bahrain National Stadium in Manama on Saturday. - ANI
Bahrain - Modi said India has the potential and capability to achieve the five-trillion economy target.
Hundreds and thousands of the Indian diaspora spread across the world will benefit from the five-trillion economy India is aiming at, visiting Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in Bahrain on Saturday.
He was addressing a 20,000-strong Indian community gathered at the National Stadium in Bahrain.
"The government is at the steering wheel of development, the accelerator is controlled by you people," said Modi urging the Indian community in Bahrain to take part in various developmental programmes his government is undertaking.
Modi said India has the potential and capability to achieve the five-trillion economy target.
"We have set the target to empower the common man - to improve his budgetary capacity."
"Indians have gained more self-confidence. They have learned to look in the eye and talk to the rest of the world. This was all achieved because we made great strides to improve the living standard of people by providing the basic amenities like housing, toilet, water and gas connection."
In an hour-long speech intercepted by loud cheering from the crowd, Modi summed up his governments achievements in the field of digital transaction, infrastructure development, space technology, ease of doing business among others.
He said the whole world is praising India's unique mantra of 'local solution for global problems."
Modi also announced the launch of RuPAy card in Bahrain. "You will soon be able to wire money home to your family members in less transaction cost."
Thanking the Indian community and the Bahrain ruler for the euphoric welcome he received, Modi said he felt "he was somewhere in India."
"My job is to strengthen the 5000 year old relationship," said Modi on the India-Bahrain ties.
"Our bond is not just between the governments but of cultures too."
"He said Indian community has a "big role in Bahrain's growth story. This land has given a new meaning and opportunity to your dreams as well as that of your loved ones."
He said he heard immense praise about the community from the Prime Minister. "He was praising your so much .he was praising you and your hard work and my chest was swelling with pride."
He said he will "visit Shrinathji Temple on Sunday and "will pray for peace and prosperity in this country."
Modi is the first Indian prime minister to visit Bahrain. He was received by Prime Minister of Bahrain His Royal Highness Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa and other dignitaries.
"Honoured to have met Prince Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Bahrain. Our talks are comprehensive and included a wide range of subjects concerning India-Bahrain relations," tweeted Modi soon after arriving in Bahrain.
Tribute to JaitleyModi also paid a glowing tribute to his 'friend and collague' Aru Jaitley who passed away on Saturday morning.
"I am standing in front of you with a heavy heart and suppressing my grief at the passing away of a dear friend who has been with me at every step in my political life. I can't imagine that I am far over here when my friend has gone away. I pay him my respect from this soil and pray for his family."
Patriotism running highChants of Modi Modi and Bharat Mata ki Jai rent the air hours before Modi arrived as Indian community in Bahrain thronged the National Stadium wearing their patriotism on their sleeves.
Residents including women and children arrived waiving tri-colour flags and wearing orange and white t-shirts with the picture of the Indian PM emblazoned it.
Serpentine lines could be seen at the gates of the stadium as early as 3.30 pm.
Within no time, the Stadium in Isa turned into a sea of people with more than 20,000 people waiting impatiently to get a glimpse of their Prime Minister.
Cultural programmes depicting India's diverse culture and its multi-faceted festivals kept the crowd entertained throughout the evening.
It was nothing less than euphoria for the 400,000-strong Indian community in Bahrain as it is the first-ever visit by an Indian Prime Minister.
"See, we are sweating. It is hot. But we don't care," said an Indian expat. "We want to see Modi. He is the greatest and strongest Prime Minister India has seen. We are so proud of him," said Sreedharan, from Kerala.
Ganesh Raj, an Indian expat said "it is a proud moment for Indians in Bahrain. "No One has come before and now Modi is coming to see us."
Another expat Mukesh Vora, a businessman from Gujarat said he travelled from Saudi Arabia to see Modi as "he wants to experience the Modi magic" on stage.
"I had already listened to him in Singapore and in Dubai. I don't want to miss his speech when he is in Bahrain," said the expat.
He said Modi's visit will boost the Indian economy and will attract more investments to India. "It is good for business for sure."
Sushil Gandhi, a resident of Bahrain for the last 45 years said he is hoping for another 20-25 years of Modi.