India, Central Asia have influenced each other profoundly: PM Modi

Astana, (Kazakhstan), July 7 (ANI): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said that India and Central Asia have influenced each other profoundly over the last 2000 years.

“For monks, merchants and monarchs, it has been both – a destination and a passage. It has been an intermediary of cultures and faiths from across Asia. Your gifts to human civilisation have been rich. Your imprint on human progress has been lasting. And, over the last two thousand years and more, India and Central Asia have influenced each other profoundly,” said Prime Minister Modi.

“For centuries, Buddhism flourished in this part of the world and even influenced Buddhist Art in India. Through here, it spread eastward. As I stood in the Gandan Monastery in Mongolia this May, I marveled at that journey of faith that linked Asia across its daunting landscape,” he said.

He also said that India and Central Asia have not only enriched each in spiritual thought, but also in medicine, science, mathematics and astronomy.

“The confluence of Indian and Islamic civilisations took place in Central Asia. We enriched each other not only in spiritual thought, but also in medicine, science, mathematics and astronomy. The Islamic heritage of both India and Central Asia is defined by the highest ideals of Islam – knowledge, piety, compassion and welfare. This is a heritage founded on the principle of love and devotion. And, it has always rejected the forces of extremism,” the Prime Minister said.

“Today, this is an important source of strength that brings India and Central Asia together. The richness of our ties is written into the contours of our cities and our daily lives. We see this in architecture and art, handicraft and textile and in most popular food. The dargahs of Delhi resonate with Sufi music that draws people from all faiths,” he added.

Prime Minister Modi further said that the cities of Central Asia have become centres of yoga and Hindi.

“The cities of Central Asia have become centres of yoga and Hindi, long before the world came together to celebrate the International Day of Yoga on 21st June. Uzbekistan has recently completed fifty years of radio broadcast in Hindi. Our epics Ramayana and Mahabharata were popular on Uzbek TV as they were in India,” he said.

“Many of you wait for the release of the latest Bollywood film with the same excitement as people in India. This is the source of goodwill between our people. It is the foundation of a relationship of hearts and emotions. And, it cannot be measured only by the scale of trade or the demands of States. It was evident when President Nazarbayev and the leaders of other Central Asian Republics came to India soon after their nation’s independence,” he added. (ANI)

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