Members of the Indian community in Egypt showered fulsome praise on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, hailing him as India's hero', as he began his two-day visit here on Saturday.
Modi, the first prime minister to undertake a bilateral visit to Egypt in 26 years, was given a rousing welcome at the Ritz Carlton hotel, where he interacted with the Indian diaspora in separate groups.
Most of the members appreciated the Prime Minister's address to the US Congress and the economic progress of the country under his leadership.
You are India's hero, a member of the Indian diaspora told Modi, who responded by saying that efforts by every Indian, including those living overseas, have contributed to the country's success.
Saara Hindustan sabka hero hai. Desh ke log mehnat karte, desh ki taraqqi hoti hai (Entire India is everyone's hero. The people of the country work hard and the nation progresses), the prime minister said.
This is a result of your hard work. Your devotion is paying off (Yeh aapki mehnat ka natija hai. Aapki tapasya kaam kar rahi hai, Modi said.
Modi also met the members of the Bohra community, who have strong linkages with his home state of Gujarat.
Earlier, waving the Indian tricolour, members of the Indian community welcomed the Prime Minister to chants of 'Modi, Modi', 'Vande Mataram' when he reached the hotel here.
An Egyptian woman, Jena, dressed in a saree, greeted Modi with the popular song 'Yeh Dosti Hum Nahi Chhodenge' from the movie 'Sholay'.
Impressed by the rendition of the Kishore Kumar-Manna Dey number, the Prime Minister expressed surprise when Jena said she knew very little Hindi and had never visited India.
"Kisi ko pata bhi nahi chalega ki aap Misr ki beti ho ya Hindustan ki beti ho (Nobody will be able to tell whether you are a daughter of Egypt or a daughter of India)," Prime Minister Modi said.
"Deeply moved by the warm welcome from the Indian diaspora in Egypt. Their support and affection truly embody the timeless bonds of our nations. Also noteworthy was people from Egypt wearing Indian dresses. Truly, a celebration of our shared cultural linkages," the Prime Minister tweeted.
On Sunday, Modi will visit the 11th Century Al-Hakim mosque, which was renovated with assistance from the Dawoodi Bohra community.
The Bohra community in India actually originated from the Fatima dynasty and they have renovated the mosque from the 1970s onwards.
He will visit the Heliopolis War Cemetery to pay respects to the Indian troops who gave their lives in the ultimate act of valour for Egypt during World War-1.
This memorial was built by the Commonwealth, although it is dedicated to the 3,799 Indian troops who lost their lives in different First World War conflicts in Egypt.
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