Tokyo, Sep 2 IANS | 3 months ago

Prime Minister Narendra Modi Tuesday said India and Japan's friendship will determine the course of the 21st century.

"There is no doubt that the 21st century belongs to Asia. But India and Japan's friendship will determine how it will actually look like," Modi told the Indian community in Japan after inaugurating the Vivekananda Cultural Centre here.

"The state and direction of the 21st century will depend on the direction in which Japan and India try to take the world," he said.

He said India's youth have attracted the world community towards India with their remarkable performance in the information technology sector.

He said it was in the aftermath of the Information technology revolution that there was a dynamic shift on how the world looked at India.

"We move the mouse (of the computer) and the world moves too," Modi said.

He said there should be no compromise on part of Indians with their self-esteem.

"Only that society of the world progresses that believes in its strength and that has pride and esteem in itself. We should never compromise with our self-esteem," Modi said.

He appealed to the Indian community in Japan to influence more and more Japanese to visit India, thereby boosting India's tourism prospects.

"There are 23,000 Indians or 5,000 Indian families living in Japan. If every family influences five Japanese familes to visit India, a total of 25,000 Japanese families or around 75,000 to 100,000 Japanese will be visiting India every year. This will give a tremendous boost to our tourism," Modi said.

Terming his Japan visit as "very successful", Modi said it was for the first time that the word trillion was in news.

"So far we would hear only about millions and billions. Now we are hearing about trillions," Modi said, hinting at Japan's offer of investment of 3.5 trillion Yen to India in the next five years.

Modi said he gifted the Hindu holy book Bhagavad Gita to the Japanese emperor.

"I did not have anything better to offer and the world does not have anything better to receive," Modi exclaimed, adding that this might create a political storm in India.

"Our secular friends will say that I am communalising this (Gita) too," Modi said.

Reiterating that his government laid great emphasis on cleanliness, Modi said the best gift Indians could give to father of nation Mahatma Gandhi on his 150th birth anniversary in 2019 was the gift of a clean India.

He appealed to the Indian community in Japan to share tips with their Indian relatives on cleanliness.

"You should tell your relatives in India that this is how we maintain cleanliness, and share the knowhow with them," Modi said.

(Posted on 02-09-2014)

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