As India is celebrating 71st Republic Day, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who was a Chief Guest this year but cancelled his visit, offered his greetings to the country.
"Today as India celebrates Republic Day and the birth of the extraordinary Constitution that established your nation as the biggest sovereign democracy in the world, I want to offer my sincere greetings to a country that is very close to my heart," Boris Johnson said.
He further said "I was looking forward to joining you at the invitation of my friend PM Modi. Alas, our common struggle against COVID has kept me in London. The virus is compelling people to stay apart, including family and friends in Britain and India who form what PM Modi has called living bridge between us."
"As I speak, our 2 countries are working side by side to develop, produce and distribute vaccines that will help to free humanity from the pandemic. Thanks to the combined efforts of Britain, India & many other nations we are on the road to success against COVID," said Boris Johnson who was to attend the Republic Day parade as the Chief Guest.
"I look forward to visiting India later this year, strengthening our friendship and striving for the quantum leap in our relationship that PM Modi and I have both pledged to achieve," he added.
Meanwhile, Nepal PM KP Sharma Oli expressed his best wishes for continued peace, progress and prosperity of the people of India. He admired India's spectacular progress in various fields of science, technology, medicine and economic development.
He also expressed gratitude to the Govt of India for providing one million COVISHIELD vaccines to Nepal as a grant as a gesture of good neighbourly relations.