PM invites Pope Francis to India during meet in Vatican
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday met Pope Francis in Vatican City and invited him to visit India. He was accompanied by National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval and Foreign Minister Dr. S Jaishankar. The one-on-one meet was scheduled for only 20 minutes but went on for an hour, reports said. Here are more details on this.
'A very warm meeting'
"Had a very warm meeting with Pope Francis. I had the opportunity to discuss a wide range of issues with him and also invited him to visit India," PM Modi tweeted alongside his pictures with the Pope.
Why does it matter?
- If Pope Francis, the head of the Roman Catholic Church, accepts the Indian PM's invitation, it will mark his first visit to the country since taking charge of the position in 2013.
- The last Papal visit had happened in 1999 when Pope John Paul II came to India and Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister.
- Catholic Church is the largest religious denomination globally.
What did PM Modi and Pope discuss?
PM Modi and the Pope discussed a wide range of issues including climate change and poverty, NDTV reported citing sources. The PM also met with the secretary of state of the Vatican City State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin. Earlier, he had interacted with people from various communities and paid floral tributes at the bust of Mahatma Gandhi in Rome.
After Rome, PM to head to Glasgow
PM Modi is currently on a two-day visit to Rome to attend the G20 Summit at the invitation of Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi. He will next head to Glasgow, United Kingdom for the COP26 meet at the invitation of British PM Boris Johnson. COP26 is being seen as a crucial event for countries around the world to plan the handling of climate change.