Narendra Modi’s Birthday Highlights: Wishes poured in from all corners of the world for Prime Minister Narendra Modi who turned 70 on Thursday. One of the first VIPs to wish Modi was Nepal Prime Minister KP Oli, who said that the two leaders will continue to work closely together towards strengthening relations between India and Nepal. The wishes come amid strained ties between the neighbours over a new Nepal map which shows Indian territories marked as its own and several other flashpoints.
Other foreign leaders - German chancellor Angela Merkel and British PM Boris Johnson - also wished Modi. Merkel greeted Modi and noted that they have succeeded in consolidating further the traditionally good relations between Germany and India for the benefit of the peoples of the two countries.
"Please accept my warmest congratulations on the occasion of your 70th birthday. I am happy to take this opportunity to thank you for our trustful and constructive cooperation," Merkel said in her letter to Modi.
"Together over the past few years, we have succeeded in consolidating even further the traditionally good relations between India and Germany. I have fond memories, for example, of our meeting last November at the Indo-German intergovernmental consultations," she said. Johnson, wishing Modi, said he hoped to meet his Indian counterpart soon.
Russian President Vladimir Putin also extended greetings to Modi, wishing him good health, happiness, well-being and success. In a letter written to Modi that was shared with CNN-News18, Putin said he values the kind, friendly relations that have developed between the two over the last few years. “Kindly accept my heartfelt congratulations on your 70th birth anniversary,” he wrote.
Meanwhile, BJP marked ‘Seva Saptah’ on the occasion, which began from September 14 across the country to pray for the long life and good health of Modi.
"The Prime Minister's birthday falls on September 17 and we will pray for his long life and good health so that he can continue to take decisions in the national interest," party's National Vice President and in-charge Jammu and Kashmir Avinash Rai Khanna said.
Dozens of prominent persons, including office-bearers of Bishnah-based social organisation Vikas Manch, several sarpanch and panch and former village representatives joined the party. Khanna said he is part of the four-member team constituted by the party to supervise the 'Seva Saptah' programme to reach out to the people and mitigate their problems.
Political leaders across party lines also wished the leader on his birthday. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, said, "My greetings to the Hon'ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji on his 70th Birthday. I wish him a healthy and successful year ahead." NCP leaders, including party president Sharad Pawar and Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, on Thursday extended birthday greetings to Modi.
Meanwhile, the civic body in Surat, in collaboration with several other business groups, decided to plant 70,000 saplings across the city to mark the occasion.