Chennai, Oct. 12:
The two-day historic meeting of PM Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping commenced at Mamallapuram, an ancient port town of the Pallavas, near here. The Chinese President came to the Arjuna Penance sharp by 5 pm yesterday and he was greeted by Mr
Modi who was dressed in a Tamil attire of Veshti (Dhoti), white shirt and an ‘angavastram’.
He took Xi Jinping for a guided tour of the famous world heritage sites of Arjuna’s Penance, Krishna’s Butterball, the Pancha Ratha and Shore temple in this ancient temple town, kicking off the second informal summit between the two leaders who enjoyed watching cultural programmes there.
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping held a two-and-a-half-hour “pleasant conversation” over dinner on Friday, resolving to further energise bilateral development partnership and insulating the overall ties from differences over contentious issues.
After the dinner was over, Xi left for Chola ITC Grand in Chennai while Modi returned to Taj Fishermens’ Cove hotel at Kovalam where he has been camping.
Today also the two leaders resumed their talks. Xi traveling in a bullet proof car reached Modi’s place at Kovalam. Modi greeted Xi by shaking his hands. Then they left for the meeting venue by a battery-run car. They held a 55-minute meeting at the venue which was facing the sea.
After around an hour-long talk at the Fisherman’s Cove resort, the two leaders took a stroll along the beach and were seen engaged in the discussion. “The Wuhan summit instilled a new momentum and trust in our relations and today’s ‘Chennai vision’ is the start of a new era in India-China relations,” Modi said while starting the talks.
“The first informal summit between India and China last year in Wuhan led to fresh stability in our relations and gave a fresh momentum. Strategic communication between our two countries has also increased. There have been deep cultural and trade relations between China and the state of Tamil Nadu.
For the most part of the last 2000 years, India and China have been economic powers,” he added. “We had decided that we will manage our differences prudently and won’t allow them to turn into disputes. We will remain sensitive about our concerns and our relationship will contribute towards peace and stability in the world,” Modi said further.
Apart from Modi, National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale were also present during the talks.
“Yesterday Prime Minister as you said, you and I had engaged in candid conversations like friends, heart to heart discussions on bilateral relations. We are really overwhelmed by your hospitality. I and my colleagues have felt that very strongly. This will be a memorable experience for me and us,” said Jinping.
The delegation-level talks happened after a one-to-one meeting between the two heads of states. The eight-a-side discussion from each contingent will focus on border security, trade, terrorism and culture issues. At the end of the 55-minute meeting, both Modi and Xi visited the handicraft exhibition at the hotel in Kovalam.
Modi presented a silk saree with the image of Xi Jinping woven on it, to the Chinese President. His Chinese counterpart presented a plate with the image of Modi engraved on it.
After finishing his lunch at Kovalam, Xi left for Chennai. At the Meenambakkam airport Governor Banwarilal Purohit, Tamil Nadu CM Edappadi K Palaniswami, Deputy Chief Minister Panneerselvam and his cabinet colleagues gave a warm send off to Xi Jinping who departed for Nepal.