9 min read.Updated: 03 Jun 2019, 06:11 PM ISTG.Parthasarathy
Pakistan’s absence last week was not merely a Pulwama after effect, but signals deep shifts in India’s foreign policy
New Delhi: The swearing-in ceremony on 26 May 2014, marking Narendra Modi’s first term as Prime Minister in office, was distinctly different from those one had witnessed earlier in New Delhi. Apart from local dignitaries and the diplomatic corps, the heads of government of all neighbouring Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) countries—Afghanistan, Pakistan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal, along with the Prime Minister of Mauritius—were also invited to his inauguration. Moreover, unlike in the past, there was significant public participation. Given the size of the audience, the swearing-in was administered in the forecourt of the Rashtrapati Bhavan, by then president Pranab Mukherjee.