Greek President greets Kalam in Sanskrit

via published on April 27, 2007

ATHENS: It was a pleasant surprise for President A P J Abdul Kalam when his Greek counterpart Karolos Papoulias greeted him in Sanskrit at the banquet ceremony hosted in honour of the visiting dignitary.

“Rashtrapatm Mahabhaga, Sur Swagatam Yavana dishe (President, welcome to you)”, thus began the Greek President his speech at the banquet hosted at the Presidential palace last night much to the delight of the Indian delegation.

Papoulias had studied Sanskrit in Germany and the reason to study the Indian classical language was to understand India better.

“I wanted to welcome you in Sanskrit, the ancient Indian language that is related to ancient Greek, and which I had the opportunity to learn and love during my time as a student in Germany,” the Greek President said.

“India and Greece were the birthplaces of great civilisations, which at a certain point in time, in the era of Alexander the Great, met and formed an entirely particular relationship between them. It is said that the importance of civilisations is indicated, above all, by their ancient history and the beauty of their mythology on Creation.

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