PM Modi By His Side, Benjamin Netanyahu Recalls Dinner Date 30 Years Ago

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the partnership between India and Israel was "a marriage really made in heaven" that the two countries were "implementing here on earth".

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PM Narendra Modi and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a joint press briefing.


JERUSALEM: 

Highlights

  1. Israeli PM recalls 'personal' significance of visit by PM Modi
  2. 30 years ago he'd taken Sara, now his wife, on date to Indian restaurant
  3. Dinner in PM Modi's honour prepared by same restaurant owner
In the 24 hours that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been in Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other leaders have gone out of their way more than once to make the first visit to the Jewish state by an Indian PM a success. At a joint press meet by the two leaders on Wednesday, PM Netanyahu added a bit of personal touch too.

Calling his meetings with PM Modi the first day of a historic journey, Mr Netanyahu, who had hosted the visiting premier to a private dinner last night, remembered a dinner date at an Indian restaurant in Tel Aviv that he and Sara, now his wife, had gone for 30 years earlier.

"So yesterday, I asked Reena Pushkarna, who is the owner of this restaurant, to prepare this dinner for this date, and it was equally good," the Israeli prime minister said, referring to the chef Pushkarna, who runs a chain of restaurants in Israel and is also known as its Curry Queen.

The Israeli PM also spoke about the Israeli singer of Indian origin, Liora Itzhak, who performed at the dinner hosted at his official residence. "She sang a song hauntingly beautiful, in Hindi. But also she sang a Hebrew song, 'You and I will change the world," he said.

India and Israel are changing our world and maybe, changing parts of the world, he said. "Because... it is a marriage really made in heaven, but we are implementing it here on earth," Mr Netanyahu said about partnership between India and Israel.

It is a phase that Mr Netanyahu had used to describe Israel's partnership with China during his visit to Beijing in May this year when he also called the Jewish state China's "perfect junior partner". Earlier, he had used the "marriage made in heaven" phrase to refer to the partnership with software giant, Microsoft.

Earlier in the day, PM Modi had also noted the unprecedented welcome that he was receiving in Israel and expressed his gratitude to Israeli President Reuven Rivlin who came out to receive him. "The President of Israel welcomed me so warmly, he broke protocol. This is a mark of respect for the people of India." PM Modi said.


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