On February 15, 2023, India’s External Affairs Minister, Dr. S. Jaishankar, met with Fiji’s Deputy Prime Minister, Biman Prasad, and discussed ways to advance the countries’ long-standing bilateral relations.
Dr. Jaishankar is on a three-day official tour to the South Pacific archipelago nation in order to attend the 12th World Hindi Conference. His visit to Fiji is the first by an incoming ministerial delegation after the new government was formed in Fiji in December last year.
Dr. Jaishankar tweeted on Wednesday about his great experience meeting Bimad Prasad in Nadi. Both ministers held discussions on further enhancing their longstanding bilateral ties through their development cooperation. He inaugurated the 12th Vishwa Hindi Sammellan in Nadi, Fiji, on Wednesday.
Ratu Wiliame Maivalili Katonivere, who is the President of Fiji, was also present at the event. Dr. Jaishankar arrived in Nadi on Tuesday. He was welcomed by the education minister of Fiji, Minister Aseri Radrodro.
Dr. Jaishankar tweeted “Bula” and “Namaste Fiji.” He further added the date of commencement of the 12th Vishwa Hindi Sammellan that is happening in Nadi and also thanked the Minister of Education, Aseri Radrodro, for the warm welcome. He tweeted that he is willing to meet Hindu enthusiasts from all over the world. Dr. Jaishankar emphasized the promotion of Hindi all across the world in the 12th Vishwa Hindi Sammellan. He said that in an event like the World Hindi Conference, it is quite natural that their focus should be on various aspects of the Hindi language, its use on a global platform, and its dissemination. He further added that they will discuss issues like the status of Hindi in Fiji, in the Pacific region, and in the indentured countries. He said that the era of imitating western traditions and languages is over.
Dr. Jaishankar said that the era when they equated progress and modernity with westernization is behind them. Many such traditions and languages were suppressed during the era of colonialism, and they are now raising their voices on the global stage. It is necessary for the world to know about every society and culture.
Dr. Jaishankar further thanked the government of Fiji for organizing the 12th Vishwa Hindi Sammelan in Nadi and added that an event like this helps promote a long-standing relationship between the two countries.
While speaking at the event, the President of Fiji, Ratu Wiliame Maivalili Katonivere, said that this forum presents a unique opportunity to celebrate the enduring strength of the historical and significant relationship that Fiji shares with India. The World Hindi Conference is co-hosted by the governments of India and Fiji from February 15–17, 2023.