This week marks a significant step in the bilateral relationship between Australia and India, as Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives in Sydney for his second visit as Prime Minister for key bilateral meetings with Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and showstopping cultural events as the Indian diaspora in Australia gets ready to welcome him.
While the visit was initially for the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue meeting that has now been cancelled, this bilateral visit signifies the strength of the Australia and India relationship, something unheard of over a decade ago. PM Modi’s visit to PNG equally signifies India’s strengthening ties in the Pacific, something I will discuss at Griffith Asia Institute this week. Professor Mattoo and I shared our thoughts on the visit in the Indian Express.
I encourage anyone in or visiting Melbourne to see the new Indian textile exhibition, Sutr Santati at Melbourne Museum, a tribute to India’s 75 years of Independence and Swadeshi. The Institute is a cultural partner of this exhibition and congratulates Rohini Kappadath, Manager of Victoria’s Immigration Museum and Museums Victoria for helping to build a more deeper authentic understanding of India.
Our Education program continues to grow in scope with a record number of applications for our Australia India ‘Unnati’ Research Collaboration Grants that closed last week. Funded by the Australian Government, applications are now being assessed successful academics will be announced in due course.
Our Defence program is also delivering a number of insightful publications and enabling the Institute to partner with think tanks in Australia and India on key security issues including Kate O’Shaughnessy on India’s battle over disinformation in the Indian Ocean.
Finally, It was delightful to have Visiting Fellow Professor Bindu Puri from JNU at the Institute for her series of Gandhi lectures and to meet with Professor Sanjay Zodpey, President of the Public Health Foundation of India, during his visit to Australia to celebrate his Doctor of Medicine award (honoris causa) from University of Sydney. Congratulations Professor Zodpey.