UK PM Boris Johnson cancels Republic -Day visit to India


London: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday cancelled his visit to India later this month to attend the Republic Day celebrations in New Delhi as chief guest, among other engagements, so that he could focus on the domestic response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

“The Prime Minister spoke to Prime Minister Modi this morning, to express his regret that he will be unable to visit India later this month as planned,” a statement from 10, Downing Street said.

“In light of the national lockdown announced last night, and the speed at which the new coronavirus variant is spreading, the Prime Minister said that it was important for him to remain in the UK so he can focus on the domestic response to the virus,” it said.

The statement said the leaders underlined their shared commitment to the bilateral relationship, and to continuing to build on the close collaboration between their countries – including in response to the pandemic.

“The Prime Minister said that he hopes to be able to visit India in the first half of 2021, and ahead of the UK’s G7 Summit that Prime Minister Modi is due to attend as a guest,” the statement added.