Abuja [Nigeria], May 30 (ANI): Defence Minister Rajnath Singh who is on a visit to Nigeria, interacted with the Indian diaspora in Abuja.
The event, organised by the Indian High Commission, was attended by the Indian community not just from Abuja, but also from other cities of Nigeria such as Lagos.
Singh spoke about the increasing importance of India on the world stage owing to its fast-expanding economy and progressive government actions. He appreciated the positive contribution made by the Indian community in Nigeria and expressed confidence that they will continue to keep the Indian flag flying high.
Rajnath Singh emphasised on the government's focus on 'Aatmanirbharta' and the significant progress made in defence exports in recent years towards achieving the objective of 'Make in India, Make for the World'. He also lauded the capabilities of the Armed Forces in effectively countering any threat or challenge from adversaries.
Later, the Minister interacted with senior Nigerian dignitaries, including the Chief Justice and Acting Minister of Defence, at the dinner hosted by the Indian High Commissioner.
Rajnath Singh was in Abuja to attend the swearing-in ceremony of the President of Nigeria Bola Tinubu. Nigeria is home to more than 50,000 Indians. Indian-owned/operated companies and businesses are among the largest employers in Nigeria.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh attended the swearing-in ceremony of the President-elect of Nigeria Bola Ahmed Tinubu in Abuja on Monday.
In addition to senior officials of the Ministry of Defence, the Defence Minister's delegation to Nigeria included top executives of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL), the Ministry of Defence said in an official release.
These executives met with military and government personnel from Nigeria in order to determine what needs they had that Indian defence businesses could meet. To improve cooperation, B2B meetings were organised with Nigerian businesses.
Besides high-level political representation from countries across the African continent, including several Heads of State, India was among the select non-African nations that were represented in the 'swearing-in ceremony' at the Ministerial level, reflecting the high priority and strength of our bilateral relations with Nigeria, according to the Ministry of Defence statement.
The Bangladeshi Minister for Local Government, Rural Development, and Cooperatives, Tazul Islam, who was also in Abuja for the swearing-in event, also met with Rajnath Singh for a brief period of time.
The two leaders expressed the commitment of their respective Governments to deepening and extending the bilateral ties during the meeting, which was a testament to the goodwill between India and Bangladesh, the press release read.
Notably, this is the first-ever visit of an Indian Defence Minister to Nigeria.
The Defence Minister's visit to the West African nation is seen as an important landmark in building the strong bonds of friendship between the two countries.
Bola Ahmed Tinubu has been sworn in as the country's new President despite political unrest and a legal challenge to his election from the country's opposition, CNN reported.
After being sworn into office, Tinubu has become the 16th president of Nigeria.
At the 5,000-seat Eagle Square location in the nation's capital Abuja, the ceremony was held under extremely strict security in front of foreign leaders and dignitaries like President Kagame of Rwanda and Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa, according to CNN. (ANI)