At his meeting with Putin, Modi began by giving him due respect but then was quick with directions to him.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Uzbekistan for the 22nd meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization’s Council of Heads of State was just 24 hours long. The short trip to Samarkand, the site of much history and culture, was nevertheless, an opportunity for Modi to subtly play up a trope from India’s own cultural past. Much like the Chinese under Xi Jinping have been promoting the idea of ‘Chinese wisdom’ and emphasized the uniqueness of Chinese culture and history, Modi has also talked of India’s role as vishwaguru, a preceptor to the world at large. At his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin—by far the most significant bilateral meeting the Indian leader had—Modi gently admonished and advised the man who had launched the invasion of Ukraine.
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