LOOKING forward to visiting India: UK PM Johnson

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has regretted his absence at India’s 72nd Republic Day celebrations despite accepting an invite to be the Chief Guest due to the unprecedented circumstances following the detection of a new variant of Covid-19 in his country. He was scheduled to be the chief guest on the occasion at New Delhi’s historic Raj Path in the presence of President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, Union Ministers defence chiefs and other dignitaries. It was for the first time in 55 years when the joyous celebrations were held in India on January 26, 2021, without a Chief Guest. ‘Today   India celebrates #RepublicDay and the birth of the extraordinary Constitution that established your nation as the biggest sovereign democracy in the world, I want to offer my sincere greetings to a country that is very close to my heart. I was looking forward to joining you at the invitation of my friend PM Modi. Alas, our common struggle against COVID has kept me in London. The virus is compelling people to stay apart, including family & friends in Britain & India who form what PM Modi has called living bridge b/w us: UK PM As I speak, our 2 countries are working side by side to develop, produce & distribute vaccines that will help to free humanity from the pandemic. Thanks to the combined efforts of Britain, India & many other nations we are on the road to success against COVID’’ said adding he was looking forward to visiting India later this year for strengthening friendship & striving for the quantum leap in our relationship that PM Modi and I have both pledged to achieve’’. With inputs from ANI Twitter account

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