On our cover is an exclusive mélange of world diplomats from 56 countries who have been talking to us on wide-ranging subjects—from economic relations to cleaning of the Ganga, from smart cities to Make in India, from tourism opportunities to cutting edge scientific cooperation. The Chinese Ambassador H.E. Mr Luo Zhaohui, for instance, has witnessed a strong momentum in investment projects as firms from his country have actively responded to Make in India even as Indian firms have continued to expand their presence in China. Ms MaryKay Loss Carlson, Chargé d’ Affaires at the US Embassy in India has outlined that India’s Smart Cities initiative is an important component of a range of programmes of mutual interest between the USA and India. Ambassador of the Netherlands H.E. Mr Alphonsus Stoelinga likewise says that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s initiatives such as Clean Ganga Mission and Smart Cities Project offer plenty of opportunities for Dutch companies that are active in water management and urban planning. Mongolian Ambassador H.E. Mr Gonchig Ganbold sums up his world views succinctly when he says that the “destinies of the East and the West are no longer closed systems. In every one of us there is an East and a West…a beyond where the sun rises, a dimension of hope.
” Israeli Ambassador H.E. Mr Daniel Carmon throws up a pertinent point when he says that cooperation in counter-terrorism is an important ingredient in Indo-Israeli bilateral relationships as both nations have similar challenges. Vietnamese Ambassador H.E. Mr Ton Sinh Thanh acknowledges that India has remained a traditional friend, one that has stood by Vietnam in times of difficulty. According to H.E. Mr Hamed Saif Al-Rawahi, Ambassador of Oman, ties with India that have been cordial for centuries have been further consolidated with greater engagement both in business and defence. Bangladesh High Commissioner H.E. Mr Syed Muazzem Ali notes happily that the two neighbors have been able to strengthen and consolidate friendly bilateral relations under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and PM Modi.