Israel PM Netanyahu to arrive on six-day visit to India

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu Likely To Visit Gujarat On January 17 To Hold Joint Road Show With Modi

During his four-day visit to India next week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will seek to strengthen the Jewish state's ties with the Bollywood film industry, according to media reports.

The commitment is in addition to the India-Israel Industrial R&D and Technological Innovation Fund of Dollars 40 million over five years with equal contribution from both sides that has already been agreed between the two sides, deputy Director General of Israel's Foreign Ministry, Gilad Cohen, told PTI.

Mr Netanyahu will be accompanied by a business delegation. Netanyahu pointed out that apart from meeting with the Russian leader, he would also make a visit to India soon, holding talks with the country's Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while he also meant to meet with US President Donald Trump "in Washington in March, if not sooner". He will hold a meeting with Modi and call on President Ram Nath Kovind in the national capital. The visit will include New Delhi, Gujarat and Mumbai.

Mr. Modi was the first Indian Prime Minister to have visited Israel after the two countries established diplomatic ties in 1992.

Bala Bhaskar, the Joint Secretary WANA (West Africa and North Africa) division in India's foreign ministry, said "India and Israel's bilateral relationship has been expanding in the areas of agriculture, water, science and technology, innovation, start-up, space, education, culture, homeland security and defence", since the establishment of diplomatic ties.

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The Israeli Prime Minister would be formally welcomed the next day at the Rashtrapari Bhawan following which he would lay wreath at Rajghat. He will be visiting Delhi, Agra, Ahmedabad and Mumbai.

In Gujarat, Modi and Netanyahu will also visit the Centre of Excellence in Vadrad and inaugurate a Centre of Excellence for date palms in Bhuj via video conference.

Israeli Ambassador to India Daniel Carmon said on Thursday that Netanyahu's visit next week would serve as the "grand finale" of the anniversary celebrations.

"They will also visit the iCreate innovation campus and center", the embassy said in a statement.

Netanyahu would be arriving in Mumbai on Wednesday in the evening where he would be meeting with the Indian Jewish community. He will reach out to Bollywood in an exclusive "Shalom Bollywood" event.

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