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Indian PM Narendra Modi dedicates ‘Salma Dam’ to Afghan-India Friendship

Pakistan accuses India of covertly supporting an insurgency in its restive Balochistan province, which borders Afghanistan

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Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, left, is escorted by Afghan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah as he leaves Kabul at the city's airport, Dec. 25, 2015. Image source: VOA
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  • The Salma Dam, referred to as the Afghanistan India Friendship Dam by both countries
  • The dam is one of 200 projects completed by India in Afghanistan
  • India is seen in Afghanistan as a strong ally and a partner

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated a dam in Afghanistan’s western Herat province Saturday, June 4 that had been 40 years in the making due to war and upheaval in the country.

The Salma Dam, referred to as the Afghanistan India Friendship Dam by both countries, is built with $300 million of Indian money. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s office tweeted warm messages for Modi as he landed in Herat.

“Most welcome to my dearest friend, @narendramodi to his second home AFG. Look forward to a great conversation,” Ghani’s tweet said.

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The dam is one of 200 projects completed by India in Afghanistan, with more expected in future. “I want to give the good news to my people that ‘#AFG-#India #FriendshipDam’ is prologue to construction of many dams,” one of President Ghani’s tweets read.

In his inauguration speech, Modi emphasized the strength of his country’s relations with Afghanistan: “…for others, their commitments may have a sunset clause, but our relationship is timeless,” he said.

The 107 meter high, 550 meter long earth and rock filled dam will come online next year and start generating around 42 megawatts of electricity for mostly residential and agricultural use.

Preparation to inaugurate the Salma Dam, referred to as the Afghanistan India Friendship Dam by both countries, and is built with $300 million of Indian money, June 4, 2016. Image source: bjp.org
Preparation to inaugurate the Salma Dam, referred to as the Afghanistan India Friendship Dam by both countries, and is built with $300 million of Indian money, June 4, 2016. Image source: bjp.org

“The completion of the Afghan-India friendship dam represents the culmination of years of hard work by around 1,500 Indian and Afghan engineers and other professionals in very difficult conditions,” Vikas Swarup, Indian Foreign Ministry spokesman told reporters.

This was Modi’s second visit to Afghanistan in six months. After the inauguration of the dam, he was also awarded Afghanistan’s highest civilian honor, the Amir Amanullah Khan award.

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India is seen in Afghanistan as a strong ally and a partner, unlike its neighbor Pakistan, which is viewed as supporting the Afghan Taliban responsible for violent attacks in the country.

Analysts say Pakistan’s support of the Taliban stems from concerns that a Delhi-friendly government in Kabul would lead to encirclement. Pakistan shares its eastern border with India and western border with Afghanistan.

Pakistan accuses India of covertly supporting an insurgency in its restive Balochistan province, which borders Afghanistan.

In March, Taliban militants fired a barrage of rockets at Afghanistan’s newly built parliament complex in Kabul.

The complex, built by India at an estimated cost of $90 million, was inaugurated by Modi in December. India and Afghanistan recently signed a transit agreement with Pakistan’s third neighbor, Iran, to develop a southern port at Chabahar, which will bypass Pakistan to give India and Afghanistan access to Central Asia. (VOA)

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Indian design schools Are Influenced By Global education

The diversity and the demographics of everything is making the world come closer

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Indian design schools Are Influenced By Global education
Indian design schools Are Influenced By Global education, flickr

Ace designer Manish Malhotra, who is one of the chief mentors at the London School of Trends, says that global education is making a huge difference to all the design schools of India.

“It is making a difference overall not just to the design schools. Thanks to global education, global awareness the world is getting far more closer. Social media, travel and interactions with one another is playing a key role to make this happen,” he told IANS in a statement.

“The diversity and the demographics of everything is making the world come closer,” added Malhotra who has over 25 years of experience in styling up for Bollywood movies and has dressed the best in the glamour business.

London School of Trends offers an international Fashion and Interior Design curriculum curated and taught by globally renowned academics and industry leaders.

Manish Malhotra’s collections displayed at the Raj Mahal Jewellers India Couture Week 2014.
Manish Malhotra’s collections displayed at the Raj Mahal Jewellers India Couture Week 2014. flickr

Also read: ‘Intern Diaries’ To Feature Sonakshi, Anita Dongre, Manish Malhotra

They have a global presence with campuses in New York, Los Angeles, New Delhi and Mumbai. In India, they have Malhotra along with Producer-author Twinkle Khanna as their chief mentors for fashion and interior design, respectively. (IANS)