On March 23, 2022, on the occasion of his first official visit to India, Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias gave a speech at the “Dimitrios Galanos” Chair of Greek Studies of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in New Delhi.
In his speech, the Greek minister referred to the historical ties that have connected the two countries for more than 2500 years. Relationships dating back to before Alexander the Great, he said, as in the 5th century BC. Ktesias with his work Indica made India known to the Hellenic world. He also described the passage of Alexander the Great as the beginning of the Hellenistic era in the Indian Subcontinent. He also referred to the work of the pioneer Greek Indologist Demetrios Galanos who translated many Sanskrit texts into the Greek language in the early 19th century and wrote the first Sanskrit-English-Greek. dictionary.
Mr. Dendias thanked the professors and the administration of the University for the important role they play in the dissemination of the Greek language and culture in India, saying “I consider it a great privilege that there is a Chair of Greek Studies within the University, the ‘Dimitrios Galanos Chair’”. He also announced the strengthening of the Chair with a Visiting Professor from Greece in the next academic semester.
Finally, he discussed with the Rector of JNU Prof. Ajay Dubey the prospects of cooperation between Indian and Greek Universities and referred to the Program of Cultural & Educational Cooperation between Greece and India for the period 2022-2026 that he signed with his Indian counterpart during their morning meeting. “This program is a tangible proof of our mutual desire to enhance cultural and educational opportunities,” he said.
The speech of Mr. Dendias was attended by the Ambassador of Greece in New Delhi Mr. Dionysios Kyvetos, the First Secretary Mr. Alexandros Boudouris, the Cultural Attaché Mrs. Ismini Panagopoulou Boudouris and other members of the diplomatic corps.
JNU Vice Chancelor Prof. Santishree D. Pandit chaired the meeting and Rector Prof. Ajay Dubey shared his valuable thoughts on the prospects of academic collaboration with Greek Universities in the near future. Prof. Mazhar Asif, Dean of the School of Foreign Languages and Cultures (SLL & CS) and Prof. of Greek Studies Dr. Anil Kumar Singh welcomed the Minister and the Greek Delegation. Faculty members, fellows and students from all over India and representatives of Indo-Greek cultural associations attended this important event for the development of the bilateral educational relations.
Visit of Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias to India, INDIKA 2022