TORONTO: Prime Minister Stephen Harper has added Parliamentary Secretary Deepak Obhrai to his entourage to India from November 3 to 9.
Obhrai, whose name was missing from the original list, will also accompany the Prime Minister to the Philippines and Hong Kong after the end of the Indian leg of their tour.
Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, Joe Oliver, Minister of Natural Resources, Gerry Ritz, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Bal Gosal, Minister of State for Sport), and Tim Uppal, Minister of State (Democratic Reform), and representatives of the business and cultural sectors, are accompanying Harper who will also visit Chandigarh, Agra and Bangalore apart from New Delhi.
“I am delighted to be accompanying the Prime Minister on his second visit to India and his first visit to the Philippines. This visit highlights the tremendous progress made in our relations with India,’’ said Obhrai in a statement after his inclusion in the Prime Minister’s entourage.
The Calgary (East) MP quoted Harper from his speech on March 4, 2011, at the Year of India in Canada inaugural event as saying, “Deepak first suggested to me that should we form government… we should make relations with India one of the centerpieces of our foreign policy. Thank you for doing that, Deepak, we all appreciate it.
“The previous Liberal government had frozen relations with India and now I am happy to note that, “we have reached the top of a mountain in our relations and I look forward to the growth of our excellent friendship.”