WION Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Oct 11, 2019, 04.58 PM
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday tweeted in Chinese, Tamil and English welcoming Xi Jinping to India minutes after the Chinese President arrived in Chennai for the second India-China informal summit.
He is accompanied by 90 officials including top Chinese leadership which include Ding Xuexiang who an important aide of President and current director of the General Office of the Communist Party of China.
Yang Jiechi, Director of the Central Foreign Affairs Commission Office, Foreign Minister Wang Yi and He Lifeng, the minister in charge of the National Development and Reform Commission are the other important diginitaries accopanying President Xi.
Around 5 pm, PM Modi will provide a guided tour of three important UNESCO world heritage sites -- Arjuna’s Penance, Panch Rathas and Shore Temple -- to the Chinese President. The town has a rich history and during the Pallava empire, it is believed to have been an important trading-post connected to China.
In the evening after the cultural performances, PM Modi will host a dinner for the visiting leader in the backdrop of historic Shore temple at the Mahabalipuram Beach. Tamil delicacies both non-vegetarian and vegetarian will be on the menu during the dinner which will have 16 top officials from both sides, 8 each from India and Chinese side, excluding the top leadership.
On Friday morning, they will again spend time together and around 11 am before the delegation-level talks, they will be making opening remarks to media.
The first summit informal summit between the two leaders took place in Wuhan, China and focus in this year's summit will be too keep the momentum generated from the last year's summit.
Mamallapuram was chosen as the spot for PM Modi himself and process for the informal summit started in June 2019. India sent its first recce team in June to the town. While history played an important role, the fact that PM Modi is keen to have big summits outside national capital was the clincher. PM Modi will also be gifting the Chinese President, though it has not been disclosed what will be given by the Indian side.
Since its an informal summit, no joint statement is expected but both sides will issue separate statements in a coordinated manner.
Modi and Xi are expected to spend three hours together and overall six hours in 24 hours visit of the Chinese President.