site.btaVice President Iotova Meets with Indian Minister of State for External Affairs Lekhi
The traditionally good relations between Bulgaria and India and the untapped potential for development in a series of fields featured on the agenda of a meeting between Vice President Iliana Iotova and Meenakshi Lekhi, Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture of India, the President's Press Secretariat said here Friday.
Minister Lekhi put an emphasis on the role of Georgi Stoykov Rakovski in strengthening Bulgarian-Indian relations. In the 19th century, Rakovski was a strong supporter of India's liberation and was the first to acquaint Bulgarians with Indian culture. Iotova and her guest shared the position that in addition to being an ideologist of the Bulgarian national revolutionary movement, Rakovski is an individual on a world scale with his ideas about human rights and freedom.
The sides outlined an ambitious programme to mark the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Bulgaria and India next year. Lekhi invited Vice President Iotova to be a patron of the celebrations.
Iotova said that Bulgaria and India are successors of ancient civilizations. The two peoples should know each other better, and culture and education are the fastest way to achieve that. The Vice President outlined Bulgarians' strong interest in Indian culture and philosophy. She raised the matter of the status of the lectureship in Bulgarian language and literature at Delhi University. "The bilateral agreement should be updated as soon as possible. This lectureship is a natural bridge between our two cultures," Iotova said.
The talks also focused on the protection of human rights and gender equality.