NEW DELHI (TIP): Prime Minister Narendra Modi will leave on March 10 on a three-nation visit — Seychelles, Mauritius and Sri Lanka — the External Affairs Ministry announced today with no mention, however, of the Maldives, which was being considered earlier.

On his first trip abroad in 2015, the prime minister will be visiting the three countries from March 10 to 14, the ministry said.

On March 11, in Seychelles, Modi will hold bilateral discussions with President James Alexis Michel to strengthen bilateral maritime ties and enhance development cooperation.

Modi will be in Mauritius on March 11 and 12 where he will have extensive meetings with his Mauritian counterpart, Sir Anerood Jugnauth, to further enhance the special and unique relations.

The Indian Prime Minister will also be the Chief Guest at Mauritius’s National Day celebrations.

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The Sri Lanka leg of the trip will be spread over March 13 and 14. During his visit, Modi will hold meetings with Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena and other senior leaders across the political spectrum in the island nation.

Modi’s visit will provide opportunities for building on the close contacts at the highest political level and enhance mutual cooperation and understanding on major issues of common interest, the ministry said.

“The visit of the Prime Minister to our friendly maritime neighbours is reflective of India’s desire to further strengthen our ties in the Indian Ocean region,” the MEA added.

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