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Former Indian Ambassador reflects on strong Indo-Bahrain friendship

By Raji Unnikrishnan

Former Indian Ambassador Balkrishna Shetty recently underscored the enduring strength of the friendship between India and Bahrain. During his visit, the retired diplomat emphasised the genuine and time-tested nature of the bilateral relationship, highlighting the warmth and depth of ties between the two nations.

The visiting diplomat projected a promising outlook for collaboration between the two countries in the context of “New India” and “New Bahrain.” He highlighted the blossoming opportunities backed by advancements in technology, which are set to propel both nations forward.

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“Trust is the bedrock of successful partnerships, be it in business, diplomacy, or life in general,” Mr Shetty told Bahrain This Week.
“Our friendship with Bahrain is genuine, robust, and time-tested. I’m privileged to have played a small role in nurturing this bond, and I’m optimistic about the opportunities it presents for all involved.”

An alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, the 73-year-old was speaking to Bahrain This Week on the sidelines of the Ramadan ghabga organised by the Bahrain Businesswomen Society under the patronage of Dr Iqbal and IETO at the Aysha Bahlool Restaurant, Adliya.

“It was an unexpected trip, but with the destination being Bahrain, I was thrilled,” he said.
“The Bahrain India Society, Bahrain Chamber, and the Economic Development Board orchestrated the meetings, and what stood out was the genuine warmth and affection, even at official levels. I was deeply honored by the presence of Industry and Commerce Minister Abdulla Fakhro himself. It was a gesture that spoke volumes about the enduring friendship between our countries. In business, trust is paramount, and the longstanding relationship between India and Bahrain lays a solid foundation for collaboration.”

In his reflections, Shetty underscored how India and Bahrain complement each other, leveraging modern technology alongside age-old friendship. He highlighted the synergy between the countries’ visions for development and growth, citing the role of trust and cooperation in building mutually beneficial partnerships.

“Within just two days, we sealed two agreements and memoranda of understanding for future collaborations. I strongly advocate for companies to establish their presence in India across various sectors, given the evolving landscapes of both India and Bahrain. We bring cutting-edge technology and a shared commitment to strengthening our bond.”

Overall, Shetty’s remarks shed light on the robust foundation of Indo-Bahrain relations, rooted in shared values, mutual respect, and a commitment to progress. As both nations continue to evolve and embrace new opportunities, their enduring friendship serves as a cornerstone for future cooperation and prosperity.

Mr Shetty who was in Bahrain from September 2005 to January 2009, is renowned for his diplomatic acumen and mathematical prowess.

Shifting focus a bit, Mr Shetty expressed his awe at Bahrain’s amazing development. The country has undergone remarkable transformation, akin to the skyline of New York City, he reflected.
“In the last fifteen years, the country has flourished, yes, this reflects the kingdom’s visionary leadership. What’s remarkable is that Bahrain’s vision aligns closely with ours (India), allowing us to complement each other’s strengths with modern technology and age-old friendship.”

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