Modi meets Pope at Vatican, invites him to India

The two leaders discussed issues like climate change, poverty, pandemic, global peace and tranquillity during the meeting which lasted more than an hour

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Pope Francis in Vatican on Saturday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi met the head of Catholic Church Pope Francis at the Vatican for the first time on Saturday (October 30).

Modi was accompanied by National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar. The two leaders discussed a variety of issues including climate change, poverty, pandemic, global peace and tranquillity among others during a meeting which lasted more than an hour, though it was originally scheduled only for 20 minutes.

“Had a very warm meeting with Pope Francis. I had the opportunity to discuss a wide range of issues with him and also invited him to visit India. @Pontifex,” PM Modi tweeted.

Also read: Allowing global temp rise above 1.5C could be catastrophic: Scientists

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PM Modi is the first Indian Prime Minister Francis has met since becoming Pope in 2013. At the Vatican, Modi was accompanied by.

During the meeting, Modi invited Pope Francis to India. Pope John Paul II was the last to visit India (in 1999) during the time when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister.

There was no set agenda for the meeting, which is generally the trend every time a world leader comes to the meet His Holiness, Pope Francis.

Modi also met the secretary of state of the Vatican City State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin.

Also read: Pope Francis expresses concern for people in Afghanistan, calls for peace

PM Modi is in Rome to attend G20 Summit hosted by Italy, followed by COP26 in Glasgow, the international climate change conference.

A day before the Modi-Pope meeting, India’s foreign secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla had said, “I’m sure the issues would cover a range of areas of interest in terms of the general global perspectives and issues that are important to all of us, Covid-19, health issues, how we can work together, how we can work together to maintain peace and tranquillity and this is something that, I think would be the general trend in the discussions.”

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