The President of France, Emmanuel Macron on Thursday bestowed the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour, the highest French honour in military or civilian orders on Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a historic moment.
PM Narendra Modi also became the first Indian PM to receive this honour. He thanked the French President for the honour on behalf of the people of India.
The award ceremony took place at the Elysee Palace where PM Modi was hosted by French President Macron for a private dinner.
A statement from the ministry of external affairs said, "Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi was conferred with the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour, France's highest award, on 13 July 2023, by H.E. Mr. Emmanuel Macron, President of the Republic of France. Prime Minister thanked President Macron for this singular honour on behalf of the people of India."
The official spokesperson for the ministry, Arindam Bagchi tweeted, "A warm gesture embodying the spirit of India-France partnership. PM @narendramodi conferred with the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour, the highest award in France by President @EmmanuelMacron."
In the past, the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honor has been received by select prominent leaders and eminent personalities from across the world. These include the former South African President Nelson Mandela, King Charles - the then Prince of Wales, Former German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and Former United Nations Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, among others.
This honour given by France is yet another one in a series of top international awards and honours bestowed by various countries on PM Modi.
These include Order of the Nile by Egypt in June 2023, Companion of the Order of Logohu by Papua New Guinea in May 2023, Companion of the Order of Fiji in May 2023, Ebakl Award by the Republic of Palau in May 2023, Order of the Druk Gyalpo by Bhutan in 2021, Legion of Merit by the US Government in 2020, King Hamad Order of the Renaissance by Bahrain in 2019, Order of the Distinguished Rule of Nishan Izzuddin by Maldives in 2019, Order of St. Andrew award by Russia in 2019, Order of Zayed Award by UAE in 2019, Grand Collar of the State of Palestine Award in 2018, State Order of Ghazi Amir Amanullah Khan by Afghanistan in 2016 and Order of Abdulaziz Al Saud by Saudia Arabia in 2016.
Earlier on Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron hosted PM Narendra Modi for a private dinner at his official residence, Elysee Palace in Paris on Thursday (local time). PM Modi was received by French President Emmanuel Macron and French First Lady Brigitte Macron.
The Prime Minister, who arrived in Paris on Thursday on a two-day official visit, was accorded a ceremonial welcome at the airport. He was welcomed by French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne at the airport.