Ahmedabad, Sept 14: Prime Minister Narendra Modi, along with his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe will lay the foundation stone of the 508-km long Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail (MAHSR), popularly known as India’s first bullet train project, at Sabarmati Athletic Grounds near Sabarmati railway station today. Once completed, the bullet train will cover 508 kilometres and reduce travel time between Mumbai and Ahmedabad to around 2 hours from the existing 7-8 hours.
Post ground-breaking ceremony of the bullet train project, PM Modi and Abe will attend the the 12th India-Japan Annual Summit at the sprawling auditorium complex Mahatma Mandir in the state capital Gandhinagar. India and Japan are expected to sign multiple economic deals and launch projects, including a Suzuki car manufacturing plant at Hansalpur, about 170 km from Ahmedabad, through remote control. A parallel CEO conference has also been planned.
Boosting cooperation in defence and security is likely to be a major focus area when Modi and Abe will hold the annual summit talks. There are indications that the joint statement by the two countries after Modi-Abe talks will have certain components relating to defence cooperation. At the defence dialogue, the two sides had also agreed to commence technical discussions for research collaboration in the areas of Unmanned Ground Vehicles and Robotics. Modi and Abe are expected to deliberate on cooperation in the nuclear energy sector as well.
PM Modi and Shinzo Abe will also visit Dandi Kutir, a museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi, at the Mahatma Mandir. The two Prime Ministers would later visit Science City for a dinner hosted by Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani before the Japanese Prime Minister leaves for Tokyo on Thursday night.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe began a two-day visit to India on Wednesday. PM Modi, personally received Abe at the Sardar Vallabhhai Patel International airport with a warm hug, took him through a road show to Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram and the iconic Sidi Saiyed mosque representing the once syncretic culture of the city.