Australian PM wishes India ahead of 74th I-Day, highlights India-Aus friendship

PTI

Australian PM Scott Morrison

Australian PM Scott Morrison

Ahead of India’s 74th Independence Day, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Friday described India as a longstanding friend of Australia and sent a special message of trust, respect and friendship to Indians across the world.

Morrison said the “deep friendship” between Australia and India was about more than trade and diplomacy.

“Founded on Bharosa (trust) and Samman (respect) – it is a friendship with depth, and marked by democracy, defence cooperation, diaspora and Dosti (friendship), ” the Australian prime minister said.

“Australia joins wholeheartedly in its celebration of independence and extends our warm congratulations to the people of India,” he further added.

Referring to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the prime minister said that while this year’s celebrations will look different and many of the traditional gatherings would not take place, the two sides can draw strength from their shared values.

 “As I said during the visit to Australia of President Kovind: Our cultures might be different, but we believe in similar things. We believe in the supremacy of the ballot-box in our national life; in the rule of law; in institutions that safeguard rights; and the responsibility of free people to build a better world,” Morrison said in a statement.

“It is because of our shared values, interests, and objectives that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and I announced the historic elevation of bilateral relations to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership in June this year,” he said.

Besides Morrison, New South Wales premier Gladys Berejiklian and Opposition Labour Party leader Anthony Albanese also sent their warm wishes to Indians.

“I am delighted to send my best wishes to all Indian-Australians in NSW who are celebrating Indian Independence Day. This important day marks the founding of India as a sovereign state. Indians everywhere can be proud that India is now a respected global player and the world’s largest democracy,” Berejiklian said.

She said that many Indians were living in New South Wales and the State was richer and all the more vibrant for their presence.

Albanese said that while the celebrations this year were different than traditional ones, sentiments were the same.

“Seventy-three years later, India still stands tall as the world’s biggest democracy and as a remarkable, vibrant and diverse country,” he said while referring to the famous first speech ‘Tryst with Destiny’ by the country’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru.