Ulan Bator: After three-day successful visit to China, Prime Minister Narendra Modi headed for landlocked nation Mongolia. He arrived here yesterday evening on the second leg of his three-nation tour.
It is the first visit by an Indian Prime Minister.
From Mongolia, Modi will fly to South Korea.
Modi on Sunday said his visit to Mongolia has given their ancient ties "new strength and momentum". In a speech at the state dinner hosted by Mongolian Prime Minister Chimed Saikhanbileg at his office residence Ikh Tenger, Modi, according to a tweet by External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup, said, "In space of a day, we have given our ancient relationship new strength and momentum."
The Mongolian premier, in his speech, said Mongolians 'take immense pride in our long historic and cultural bonds with the people of India and entertain profound regard towards India as a sacred land of Lord Buddha'.
"We cherish the holy waters of the Ganga river as an elixir and the magnificent Himalaya mountain ranges as the 'Roof of the Earth'. Through the teachings of the Lord Buddha, ancient Indian philosophy, culture and manuscripts has prevailed extensively in the steppes of Mongolia," the premier said.
"Regardless of the geographical distance that separates us, we have been always bound close together with the affinity and mutual warm feelings while attaining stronger bonds of friendly relationship," Saikhanbileg said, according to the text of his speech tweeted by Swarup.
Earlier, at the community reception at the Buyant Ukhaa Stadium, Modi said: "If I had not visited Mongolia, my tour would have been incomplete. Our traditional and spiritual links run deep."
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said ties between India and Mongolia are not driven by competition against others but it is a relationship of immeasurable positive energy that comes from their spiritual links and shared ideals.
Modi, while speaking at the banquet hosted in his honour by Mongolian Prime Minister Chimed Saikhanbileg, said the “ancient relationship” between the two countries has got new strength and momentum with his visit, the first by an Indian Premier to the country.
PM Modi attends prog by Art of Living
He praised spiritual guru Ravi Shankar for introducing his Art of Living across the world, including in Mongolia.
Modi, who watched a yoga performance in the stadium, said: "I was seeing the Surya Namaskar. I saw people from all age groups were doing it and spreading the message of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam."
He said the International Day of Yoga would be observed for the first time on June 21.
Modi had proposed a yoga day during his speech at the UN General Assembly last year, which was adopted by the world body with most countries voting for it.
has announced a credit line of USD 1 billion to Mongolia to expand its economic capacity and infrastructure.
Modi, the first Indian Prime Minister to visit Mongolia, held wide ranging talks with his counterpart Chimed Saikhanbileg here following which the two sides inked 14 agreements covering defence, cyber security, agriculture, renewable energy and health sector.
"I am pleased to announce that India will provide a Line of Credit of USD one billion to support expansion of Mongolia's economic capacity and infrastructure," Modi said at a joint press interaction with Saikhanbileg at State Palace.
The two sides also decided to upgrade their relationship from Comprehensive to "Strategic Partnership".
Modi further said that Mongolia is an integral part of India's Act East policy.
"Today, Mongolia is also an integral part of India's Act East Policy," Modi said at a joint press meet with the Mongolian premier after bilateral talks.
He said that both countries also closely linked with the future of the Asia-Pacific region.
"We can work together to advance peace, stability and prosperity in the region. You have called us your third neighbour and spiritual neighbour; we will always fulfil the responsibility that comes with this honour," he said.
Modi gifted Mongolia a Bhabhatron, the indigenous machine developed by Indian scientists for cancer treatment, in the first demonstration of bilateral cooperation in the civil nuclear sector.
The Prime Minister drove down to the National Cancer Centre here and gifted the centre the equipment to boost cancer care.
"It is state-of-art nuclear medicine cancer therapy machine, developed and manufactured in India," he said about the machine developed by the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre.
Earlier, while addressing the country's Parliament, Modi said the Bhabhatron equipment "can help treat cancer in Mongolia. This will be the first demonstration of our cooperation in the civil nuclear sector".
The visiting Prime Minister said mineral-rich Mongolia could benefit from India's expertise and high growth while praising the Buddhist country as the new bright light of democracy in the world.
Modi, who was given a rare honour by Mongolia to address its Parliament on Sunday, a holiday, said: "I bring the greetings of your 1.25 billion spiritual neighbours. There is no higher form of a relationship; no bonds more sacred than this. We in India are honoured that you think of us this way."
He said that India and Mongolia are at important juncture because the two countries are celebrating 60 years of diplomatic relations and Mongolia is celebrating 25 years of democracy.
"Mongolia is the new bright light of democracy in our world," Modi told the lawmakers at the State Great Hural � the Parliament here.
"Today, Indians and Mongolians are telling the world that the bonds of hearts and minds have the strength to overcome the barriers of distance," he said, adding friendship between them will give lessons and hold lessons for the whole world.
He appreciated Mongolia's solidarity with India at UN Security Council and said their relations will work towards progress. "In turn, time and again, you have stood in solidarity with us, in the UN and elsewhere," he said.
India and Mongolia came out strongly against the "double standards" and "selectivity" of the international community in dealing with terrorism and hoped that all safe havens and sanctuaries for terrorists will be wiped out without delay.
"Both Prime Ministers noted that the nature and spread of international terrorism in recent years poses a threat to all humanity and requires global resolve and cooperative measures of the international community without double standards or selectivity," said a joint statement inked by the two Prime Ministers at the end of the talks.
"The Prime Ministers expressed hope that all safe havens and sanctuaries for terrorists will be wiped out without delay," the statement added.
India's Prime Minister told his Mongolian counterpart Chimed Saikhanbileg that India is privileged to be considered as Mongolia's spiritual neighbour.
"India is privileged to be considered as Mongolia's spiritual neighbour. PM @narendramodi to PM Saikhanbileg at Delegation level talks," tweeted External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup.
Modi today discovered a "special connection" with Mongolia when he entered the Buddhist country's Parliament to deliver a speech, the first foreign leader to do so on Sunday - a holiday.
At the end of his 25-minute address to lawmakers at the State Great Hural - the Parliament - Modi turned around and pointed to state emblem which had a lotus among other symbols.
"When I entered the Parliament, I saw this symbol and I found special connection with this Parliament," he said.
Pointing his finger towards the emblem, he told lawmakers that there is a louts on the emblem and his party BJP's symbol is also louts.
Modi tried his hand at the morin khuur, a traditional two-stringed fiddle, that was gifted to him by Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj.
With President Elbegdorj standing by him, Modi smilingly played the horse head fiddle for half a minute.
"The morin khuur, music and Mongolia...a unique gift from President @elbegdorj," Modi tweeted.
The morin khuur is adorned with a carved horse head, and is considered a symbol of the Mongolian nation.
It has figured prominently in Mongolia's nomad culture and is one of the most important musical instruments of the Mongol people.
Modi was gifted a brown horse, Kanthaka, by Mongolian Prime Minister Chimed Saikhanbileg at the Mini Naadam sporting festival on Sunday.
"With Kanthaka, a gift from Mongolia," Modi tweeted.
External Affairs Ministry spokesperson tweeted Vikas Swarup: "A special gift for a special visitor! Mongolian PM gifts a horse to PM."
Modi on Sunday shot arrows as he tried his hand at archery at the traditional Mongolian Mini Naadam festival near here.
Attired in traditional Mongolian costume, topped with a sola hat and accompanied by Mongolian Premier Chimed Saikhanbileg, Modi held the bow and shot an arrow with confidence.
Saikhanbileg and others, including India's National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, who were watching keenly, applauded smilingly.
Saikhanbileg also tried his hand at archery.
"Not to be outdone, Mongolian PM Saikhanbileg also takes aim," tweeted external affairs ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup.
Modi and the Mongolian premier also watched sporting events of wrestling, archery and horse riding at the Chingisiin Khuree Camp, 25 km from capital Ulan Bator.
Modi presented President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj a specially commissioned reproduction of a rare 13th century manuscript on the history of Mongols from the Rampur Raza Library, Rampur.
Called Jamiut Tawarikh, this work was one of the grandest projects undertaken by the Ilkhanate king Ghazan Khan (1295-1304) and was done by the king's wazir Rasheeduddin Fazlullah Hamedani who wrote it in Persian and chronicled the history up to the reign of Oljeitju (1304-1316).
The breadth of coverage of the work often caused it to be dubbed as the first world history.
The manuscript has over 80 fine miniature illustrations. The manuscript is a part of Volume 1 of the work and no other copy of it is known to exist.
Selfie moment: PM Modi and Mongolia President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj
PM Modi unveiling foundation stone of Atal Bihari Vajpayee Centre of Excellence in IT, Comm. & Outsourcing, in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia on Sunday.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday visited the Gandan Monastery in the Mongolian capital and met the chief abbot, Hamba Lama.
Modi, the first Indian prime minister to visit Mongolia, also lighted incense and offered prayers at the monastery.
He gifted a sapling of the revered Mahabodhi tree to the lama.
He also visited the Janraisag Monastery which houses a 26 metre tall statue of Janraisag Buddha, tweeted the External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup.