During the United Progressive Alliance government in New Delhi, a scholarly parliamentarian - India’s Minister of State for External Affairs - agreed with me that the then-ruling Congress and the Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party had been in total agreement with each other in promoting co-operation with Israel. Ever since Congress Prime Minister P V Narsimha Rao decided to establish full diplomatic ties between New Delhi and Jerusalem in 1992, the successive Indian dispensations had carried forward that process consolidating their multi-faceted bilateral relations. The scholarly parliamentarian also wondered as to why the left parties in the country still remained opposed to Indo-Israeli cooperation when Russia and China, often their models - apparently, at least - in foreign and defense policies, had been firming up their ties with Israel.

Given this background, one thinks that with the arrival of Bharatiya Janata Party Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the Indian political scene, Indo-Israeli ties are prone to attain newer heights. Modi has long been a great advocate of stronger ties with the Jewish state. He has visited Israel as Chief Minister of Gujarat and experienced how meaningful Israeli cooperation has been in the success story of the state he led until recently. He is likely to visit Israel as Prime Minister and repeat his Gujarat story at the all-India level promoting mutual endeavors in the areas of agriculture, industrial research and development, solar and thermal power, pharmaceuticals, infrastructure, water recycling and water desalination plants.

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