By Michael Olugbode
The High Commission of India in Nigeria has commenced the celebration of 75 years of India’s independence with the screening of a Bollywood-Nollywood movie “NAMASTE WAHALA” in Abuja.
The High Commission also said, as one of the activities lined up for the celebration which began on March 12 in India and is expected to drag for two years, launched a magazine: “India in Nigeria: Partners in Progress.”
The film, which featured popular Nigerian stars including Richard Mofe-Damijo, Joke Silva and Broda Shaggy, and some Indian actors, encouraged marriage between Nigerians and Indians.
Speaking at the screening on Saturday in Abuja, the Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Abhay Thakur, said there is need for continued cooperation between Nigeria and India.
He said: “Both countries have successfully overcome the debilitating effects of colonialism to evolve as strong global advocates of democracy, diversity, and development for all.
“Today, India is the largest democracy in the world and Nigeria is the largest democracy in Africa.
“With diplomatic relations spanning over six decades, our two countries have, over the years, become strong partners in trade and investment, energy, security, education, health, defence, space and various capacity building and training programmes.
“Our relationship at multinational fora has been exemplary. These ties have only grown stronger during the testing times of the pandemic.”
Thakur said: “At present we are passing through a difficult time of the COVID-19 pandemic. As the world’s largest vaccine producer, we are currently working closely with Nigeria to supply vaccines from India.”
At the occasion, which held Saturday night, were important Nigerian dignitaries and India’s top citizens in Nigeria.