Pres­i­dent hails re­forms in Bhutan

Bhutan Times - - Editorial -

Pres­i­dent Maithri­pala Sirisena to­day praised Bhutan for adopt­ing a demo­cratic con­sti­tu­tion and added that Sri Lanka too could learn from the new Bhutanese Con­sti­tu­tion, es­pe­cially at a time when Sri Lanka is at­tempt­ing to fur­ther im­prove demo­cratic in­sti­tu­tions and in­di­vid­ual free­doms.

Sirisena and vis­it­ing Bhutanese Prime Min­is­ter Tsh­er­ing Tob­gay pledged to en­hance bi­lat­eral co­op­er­a­tion and es­tab­lish air links be­tween Paro and Colombo by Druk Air, the Bhutanese na­tional Car­rier. The two lead­ers agreed that Sri Lanka and Bhutan have a spe­cial re­la­tion­ship as the two coun­tries are bound by com­mon spir­i­tual link of Bud­dhism.

Prime Min­is­ter Tob­gay said that his coun­try is ex­tremely grate­ful to Sri Lanka for the gift of a sapling of Sri Maha Bodhi to Bhutan and it will be highly ven­er­ated and re­spected in his coun­try. He said that the Bodhi sapling will be a sa­cred sym­bol of the ex­tra­or­di­nary spir­i­tual bonds be­tween Bhutan and Sri Lanka.

Dur­ing the bi­lat­eral dis­cus­sions, Tob­gay thanked Sri Lanka for pro­vid­ing place­ments to Bhutanese stu­dents in Sri Lankan med­i­cal col­leges and it is a great help to the im­prove­ment of the health ser­vice in his coun­try. Pres­i­dent Sirisena said he would pro­vide more seats to Bhutanese stu­dents at the Med­i­cal fac­ulty of the Ko­ta­lawala De­fence Academy and ex­am­ine the pos­si­bil­ity of in­creas­ing the num­ber of schol­ar­ships given to Bhutan.

Pres­i­dent Sirisena said steps would be taken to in­crease co­op­er­a­tion in ar­eas such as health, agri­cul­ture and tourism be­tween the two coun­tries.

The Bhutanese Pre­mier ex­pressed his ad­mi­ra­tion for Sri Lanka, which is the first Asian democ­racy, which con­tin­ued to safe­guard democ­racy re­lent­lessly. He added that it gives in­spi­ra­tion to young democ­ra­cies such as Bhutan.

Pres­i­dent also Sirisena thanked Bhutan for the co­op­er­a­tion ex­tended to Sri Lanka at the UN and other in­ter­na­tional bod­ies.

Prime Min­is­ter Tob­gay con­grat­u­lated Pres­i­dent Sirisena on his elec­toral victory and said it re­flected the enor­mous trust and con­fi­dence placed on him by the peo­ple of Sri Lanka.

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