PM Modi leaves for five-day visit to Sweden, UK, Germany

Sri Lanka President to attend CHOGM in London and meet UK PM May

Prime Minister Modi will address a gathering of select Swedish business leaders and will also meet the Indian community in Sweden.

During the visit, he is likely to hold bilateral talks with Britain and heads of other Commonwealth countries. "He is scheduled to arrive in Stockholm on April 16 evening and will have a number of meetings on April 17, including an audience with the King of Sweden, King Carl XVI Gustaf, and consultations with Prime Minister Lofven", according to Ministry of External Affairs statement.

Sweden has supported India's key "Make-in-India" manufacturing summit with Löfven leading a delegation of Swedish industry leaders to the launch of Make India in Mumbai in 2016.

The prime minister has expressed confidence that his visit to Sweden and Britain will be useful in enhancing India's ties with the two European countries.

This is post-independent India's "darkest hour", a group of retired civil servants has said in an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the backdrop of the Unnao and Kathua rape cases while holding him responsible for the "terrifying state of affairs".

Sri Lanka President to attend CHOGM in London and meet UK PM May

Prime Ministers from the other Nordic countries, Denmark, Finland, Iceland and Norway are also expected to be in Stockholm for th Nordic-Indian summit. "It reflects the importance the UK attaches to the visit and shows the mature level of India-UK ties", said an official involved with the preparations for the visit. The Nordic countries have globally recognized strengths in clean technologies, environmental solutions, ports modernization, cold-chains, skill development and innovation. "Nordic competencies fit well with our vision for India's transformation", Modi said.

" I am confident that these visits to Sweden and United Kingdom will be useful in enhancing our engagement with these countries, " the PM said.

They also called upon the prime minister to reach out to the families of the victims in Unnao and Kathua and "seek their forgiveness on behalf of all of us", fast-track the prosecution of the perpetrators in the Kathua case and set up a court directed Special Investigative Team in the Unnao incident.

"The Commonwealth is a unique multilateral grouping that not only provides useful assistance to its developing country members, particularly the small states and small-island developing states, but also has a strong global voice for development issues", Modi had said.

"On Thursday and Friday, I will also participate in the CHOGM being hosted by the United Kindom which will take over as the new Chair-in-Office of the Commonwealth from Malta", the prime minister said.

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