In what is seen as unusual and unprecedented, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has tweeted praise for his predecessor-arch rival-former prime minister Manmohan Singh who served as PM for 10-long-years (from 2004 to 2014). Modi wrote on his Twitter page, “Matter of joy and pride that Japan has conferred Dr. Manmohan Singh with Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers. Congrats to him.”
Singh was awarded ‘The Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers’ for his “significant contribution to the enhancement of relations and promotion of friendship” between Japan and India for about 35 years, a Japanese Embassy statement said in New Delhi.
It is a “high level National Order” and a rare honour awarded to those who are recognized for their distinguished contribution, it said, adding “Manmohan Singh is the first Indian recipient of this Order.” Singh said he was truly honoured and felt “humbled by the love and affection showered upon me by the people and government of Japan.”