25 September, 2020

A Continent’s Heart Beckons

India’s engagement with Africa is admirable, but its scale has to be widened further

A Continent’s Heart Beckons

After a gap of 17 years, Africa provides yet another leader—Cyril Ramaphosa, president of South Africa—as chief guest at the Republic Day celebrations. As he watches the colourful parade along with India’s president and prime minister, memories of Africa’s giants who preceded him, such as Tanzania’s Nyerere, Zambia’s Kaunda, Nigeria’s Obasanjo and South Africa’s Nelson Mandela would be rekindled. People will experience the special relationship that binds India with Africa.

The government’s initiative to hold Africa Day celebrations at the Vibrant Gujarat summit on January 19 was also special. It showcased the new dimensions of India-Africa cooperation, covering its history, political and economic facets, and projecting its vast potential.

This relationship goes back to the pre-Christian era when Indian goods and people began reaching the African continent. Colonialism brought the two regions and their people closer. The struggle for freedom and against Apartheid put them on the same side—the winning side....



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