Russia announces highest Order for Modi (2nd Lead)
New Delhi, April 12 (IANS) Russia on Friday announced its highest order -- the Order of St Andrew the Apostle -- for Prime Minister Narendra Modi for "distinguished achievement" in developing bilateral strategic relations.
A decree signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin stated that Modi had been chosen "for distinguished achievement in development of the special and privileged strategic partnership between the Russian Federation and the Republic of India and friendly relations between the Russian and Indian people".
The Russian Embassy in India also tweeted: "On April 12, @narendramodi was decorated with the Order of St Andrew the Apostle for exceptional services in promoting special and privileged strategic partnership between Russia and India and friendly relations between the Russian and Indian people."
India and Russia, which have enjoyed closed ties for the last seven decades, entered into strategic relationship a decade back.
The ties encompass several key areas like nuclear, defence and energy.
Russia has been the mainstay for India's defence requirements and most of its military inventory comprises fighter aircraft and other equipment procured from Moscow.
Modi was also awarded the United Arab Emirates' highest civilian award, the Order of Zayed, earlier this month for boosting bilateral relations between the two countries.
He has already been conferred with Saudi Arabia's highest civilian honour -- the King Abdulaziz Sash.