Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj will soon be on her way to Saudi Arabia to conduct one of the highest levels of contact between Indian and the Kingdom after the rise of new Saudi crown prince Mohammad bin Salman since last year.

Considered to be one of the latest most significant establishment in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, last year the King Salman named his son Mohammad bin Salman (MBS) as the crown prince of Saudi Arabia. Since the coronation as crown prince, MBS has tried to make major ‘revolutionary’ reforms in the kingdom, in a bid to ‘modernise’ it. Amid this, Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj is scheduled to visit Saudi Arabia from 6th to 8th February – marking it as one of the highest levels of contact between India and Saudi Arabia after a major shakeup in the ruling establishment in the kingdom. During her visit, the Indian minister will inaugurate Saudi Arabia’s annual Janadriyah Festival on Wednesday where India has been invited as “guest of honour this year”.

Also, Indian Minister of State for External Affairs V K Singh said that Swaraj will head the Indian delegation that will showcase Asia’s third largest economy at the Saudi “National Heritage and Cultural Festival”. It is a rare honour for India to be named the guest country at the heritage festival, during which, displays and presentations by ministries and departments such as Indian Ordnance Factories Board, ISRO, India Tourism board, ministry of shipping, ministry of textiles, handicrafts promotion council, ministry of food processing industries, skill development, Digital India, Make in India and much more will be held. A number of Indian companies will also be represented at the festival including Larsen & Tubro, Tata Motors, Al Abeer Medical Group, Jet Airways, Shapoorji Pallonji and Aster Med City.

The Arabian festival will receive a desi tadka with Indian Food at the Flavours of India booth in the Indian Pavilion. Besides all these, there will be presentations displaying Indian socio-cultural heritage, folklore, traditional costumes, Indian perfumes, bridal costumes, artefacts, display of specimen of calligraphy, Arabic manuscripts etc. India’s participation is expected to strengthen the deep-rooted relationship with Saudi Arabia, taking relationship to new heights.

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