Modi holds talks with Kazakh president

Astana: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday congratulated Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev on his 75th birthday and lauded his vision for Kazakhstan’s progress.

Modi, who was earlier accorded a welcome at the Akorda presidential palace, held delegation level talks with Nazarbayev, who has been ruling the oil-rich Central Asian republic since 1989.

“PM @narendramodi congratulates President Nazarbayev on his 75th birthday. Lauds his vision for Kazakhstan’s progress,” tweeted external affairs ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup.

“Prez Nazarbayev compliments PM Modi on success of International Day of Yoga. Calls it spiritual heritage of India,” he tweeted.

“Hydrocarbons, uranium, fertiliser, IT parks, space, defence, connectivity, UN reform, counter-terrorism on menu of India-Kazakhstan talks,” he added.

Earlier, Modi presented Nazarbayev with a set of books relating to religions born in India.

President Nazarbayev has held the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions every three years at the Palace of Peace and Accord in Astana since 2003.

The presented set includes an English translation of Guru Granth Sahib, as also specially commissioned reproductions from the manuscripts collection of National Museum, Delhi.

The reproductions include one of Jainism’s most revered texts, Bhadrabahu’s Kalpasutra (15th century AD) in Prakrit; one of Buddhism’s most important scriptures Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita (12th century AD) in Sanskrit; and a Persian translation of Valmiki’s Ramayana (18th century AD) in nastaliq script, according to an official statement.

Modi, who is on a tour of Central Asian countries, met President Nazarbayev on the second day of his visit to Kazakhstan. On Tuesday, he met Prime Minister Karim Massimov.

Nazarbayev, who turned 75 earlier this week, is officially titled Leader of the Nation. A former steelworker who promoted market reforms, Nazarbayev turned Kazakhstan into the second largest economy in the former Soviet Union and the No.2 oil producer after Russia.