The central government is working to invite the leaders of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) to New Delhi for the upcoming Republic Day celebrations in 2022.
BIMSTEC comprises of Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Thailand, Myanmar, Bhutan apart from India.
Leaders of BIMSTEC had previously attended Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s swearing-in ceremony following the Lok Sabha elections in 2019. However, there has been a change of leadership in certain BIMSTEC nations post-2019 and the Indian government is coordinating with the leaders of these countries to confirm their availability on 26th January, 2022.
Certain feelers have already been sent to them through ‘appropriate channels’, Indian Express reports. Accordingly, the guest list for Republic Day will be officially declared once they have received the required confirmations.
Apparently, the letter of invitation is sent out only after a foreign leader’s availability is confirmed.
It is important to note that India didn’t have any Chief Guest for the Republic Day celebrations in 2021 as British Prime Minister (PM) Boris Johnson had cancelled his visit owing to the Covid-19 pandemic situation in his country back then.
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