Kabul, Dec 25: The memorable portrayal of a pathan 'Sher Khan' by actor Pran in Bollywood movie 'Zanjeer' today found its way into diplomacy as Prime Minister Narendra Modi mentioned it to underscore how Indians view Afghans as true and magnanimous friends.
And not just Sher Khan, the character 'Kabuliwalla' in story by that name penned by Rabindranath Tagore too figured in Modi's speech to Afghan Parliamentarians. The swanky new building of Afghan Parliament that was built by India at a cost of $90 million was inaugurated by PM Modi.
Addressing the Afghan Parliament today with numerous references emblematic of the warm, age-old ties, PM's speech also mentioned the successes of Afghan cricket team to highlight the strong cultural and people-to-people bond between the two peoples.
Here are the highlights of the historic visit:
- Bow to the land where legends are born- of poetry and beauty,of valour and honour, of pride and generosity.
- We are deeply touched that you have chosen to name this building the Atal Block. Eleven years ago Atal ji dreamt of this project in partnership with Karzai Saheb.
- I stand on behalf of 1.25 billion friends in India in admiration for your achievements in gratitude for your friendship
- Great Afghan people waged an epic struggle of courage and resolve to shape their future with vote and debate not gun and violence.
- Modi lauded the Afghan people for their valour, courage and magnanimous friendship and then went to recite lyrics of a song in Zanjeer filmed on "Hindi cinema's most favourite Pathan character - Sher Khan".
- "Yaari hai imaan mera, yaar meri zindagi" a smiling Modi said and then translated it for Afghan Parliamentarians, that "friendship is my faith and friend is my life."
- Hoping for more free movement between the people of the two countries so that 'Kabuliwalla' can again come to India and win hearts.
- The Indian Prime Minister congratulated the Afghans as their Under-19 cricket team had beaten Zimbabwe in its first home series. "We are just as proud," he said.
- Every youth in Afghanistan should see a future in which IT stands for information technology, not international terrorism.
- Afghans are not only fighting for their future but are standing up for all of us and a safer world.
- India is here to contribute not to compete; to lay the foundations of future, not light the flame of conflict.
- Afghanistan will succeed only when terrorism no longer flows across the border; when nurseries and sanctuaries of terrorism are shut.
- To every Afghan, who risked or lost his life so that his Indian guest is safe, I convey the eternal gratefulness of India.
- Together we have built roads that have brought regions closer; power transmission lines & power stations that light up Afghan homes.