PM Modi Honored with Russia's Top Civilian Award, Dedicates it to the People of India

The award was conferred upon PM Modi for his great contribution to the development of a special privileged strategic partnership between Russia and India, and to the strengthening of relations of friendship between the Russian and Indian peoples.

The highest civilian order of Russia, the Order of St. Andrew the Apostle the First-Called, was conferred upon Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday. Shortly following the bilateral meet at the Grand Kremlin Palace, Russian President Vladimir Puti­n hosted a short function to present this honor.

The award was conferred upon PM Modi for his great contribution to the development of a special privileged strategic partnership between Russia and India, and to the strengthening of relations of friendship between the Russian and Indian peoples.

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At the beginning of the ceremony, President Putin expressed his thanks by saying, "Dear Mr. Prime Minister, dear friend, your decoration with the Order of St. Andrew the First-Called is sincere gratitude on the Russian side for the large contribution you are making into strengthening friendship and mutual understanding between our states and their peoples."
 

He has also thanked the efforts he took, Modi, to say: "You met always actively for the expansion of contacts with our country; in particular, when you were Chief Minister of the State of Gujarat, it was you who forwarded the initiative of establishing sister-city relations with the regions of Russia, with the Astrakhan region."

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Noting that Modi had spent a decade at the head of the government of India, Putin added that the Prime Minister had played a big role in raising Russian-Indian relations to a particularly privileged strategic partnership.

"With your direct support, the largest Russian-Indian projects in trade, economic, and military-technical spheres, nuclear and hydrocarbon energy, high technology, and space are being successfully implemented. It is hard to exaggerate your contribution to forming a stable basis of Russian-Indian cooperation in the international scene where our countries stand for multipolarity and strict compliance with international law. They together guarantee stability and global and regional security, closely interacting within BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation," Putin added.

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The Order of St. Andrew the Apostle the First-Called consists of a badge, a star, an order chain, and an order ribbon made of blue silk moire. For those awarded for distinction in combat, the badge and star are fitted with swords.

PM Modi said thanks, adding, "Honoured to receive the Order of St. Andrew the Apostle. I dedicate it to the people of India."

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Founded by Tsar Peter I about 1699, this represents the oldest Russian state award. It was abolished in 1918 and then restored in 1998 by decree of the President of Russia. The Order of St. Andrew the First Called is awarded to chiefs of state, heads of government, military and political highest-ranking officials, workers of science, culture, art, and other spheres of the economy for exceptional service in the interests of Russia's prosperity, greatness, and glory, maintenance of its national security, and sovereignty. Also, heads and top leaders of foreign governments are awarded for high contributions to the development of relations with Moscow.

PM Modi is the first Indian leader to get this award, declared in 2019.

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