Focus on 'ease of living' for common man: Modi tells ministries

Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivers a joint press statement at Male in Maldives on 8 June 2019

Prime Minister Wickremesinghe had been keen to get an Indian company involved in a container terminal in Colombo port, where China already runs one terminal.

During the interaction, Modi had said, "My thoughts are to make the PMO efficient rather than effective, as the efficiency speeds up the work process and improves the quality".

China has been pushing infrastructure projects in the region as part of its Belt and Road initiative to create a huge economic zone linking Asia and Europe. "India stands in solidarity with the people of Sri Lanka", Modi tweeted after visiting the church.

There will soon be a ferry service connecting India to Maldives. "State sponsorship of terrorism is the biggest threat the world is facing today", he said in an indirect reference to Pakistan.

He appealed humanists to have a time bound Global Conference and a comprehensive system on the lines of Climate change to tackle terrorism.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the Easter Sunday attacks, which were carried out by a local radicalized Muslim group known as National Thowheed Jammath that had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group.

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He touched upon the historical bonds, the convergence of cultural traits between the two neighbours and India's readiness to address the Maldives' concerns of Climate Change during his visit.

The two countries also agreed to strengthen coordination in enhancing maritime security in the Indian Ocean region "through coordinated patrolling and aerial surveillance, exchange of information, and capacity building", the joint statement said.

As a sign that he would continue his "neighborhood first" foreign policy rolled out during his first term, Modi traveled to the Maldives and Sri Lanka on June 8 and 9 as his first foreign visit after being re-elected.

During the informal interaction, Modi, sources said, also bounced the idea of making all 26 million infant deliveries that happen in the country, free.

Modi's motorcade made a detour to St Anthony's Shrine on Sunday while en route to President Maithripala Sirisena's seafront office in the capital, where a red carpet military parade awaited. Solih's first overseas trip was to India, and since then, several Maldivian ministers have visited India for bilateral talks.

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