Prime Minister Narendra Modi has accepted French President Emmanuel Macron’s invitation to be the guest of honour at France’s traditional military parade held during Bastille Day on 14 July. An Indian armed forces contingent will also take part in the parade alongside French forces, said the French presidency in a statement.
The Indian Prime Minister’s visit will coincide with the 25th anniversary of the “strategic partnership” between France and India. The visit will also allow joint initiatives to address challenges such as climate change, loss of biodiversity and achieving sustainable development targets, said the French presidency.
India and France entered into a Strategic Partnership in 1998. The primary pillars of this partnership are defence and security cooperation, space collaboration and civil nuclear cooperation. Both countries are expanding their collaboration in sectors such as maritime security in the Indo-Pacific region, counter-terrorism, climate change, renewable energy and sustainable growth and development.
July 14 is marked as France’s National Day. Every Bastille Day, Paris’ famous avenue des Champs-Elysées hosts a military parade, which is similar to India’s Republic Day parade on Kartavya Path. Since 1951, French heads of state have been the Republic Day guests of honour five times. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be the 2nd Indian PM to be the guest of honour at Bastille Day, after Manmohan Singh in 2009.