On November 4, 2018, First Lady of the Republic of Korea, Her Excellency Mrs. Kim Jung-sook visited India for 4 days.
- She was the First Foreign Dignitary, who had attended Diwali celebrations.
- She was the Chief guest at the “Deepotsav” event which was held in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh.
- A memorial for Queen Huh Hwang-ok was inaugurated by her at Queen Huh park in Ayodhya.
Arrival in India:
On November 4, 2018, First Lady of the Republic of Korea Mrs. Kim Jung-sook arrived in New Delhi to start her 4-day visit at the invitation of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.
Meeting the Prime Minister of India:
On November 5, 2018, Her Excellency Mrs. Kim Jung-sook met Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Upon meeting the Prime Minister and First Lady Kim discussed:
- The deep civilizational and spiritual links between India and Korea, and
- Exchanged views on promoting people-to-people exchanges.
- Successful visit of President Moon Jae-in to India in July 2018, which gave way to India- Republic of Korea Special Strategic Partnership.
Meeting Other Delegates:
Prior to meeting the PM, she also met:
- First Lady of India, Smt. Savita Kovind and
- Minsiter of External Affairs, Smt. Sushma Swaraj.
She also visited ASN Senior Secondary School in the national capital New Delhi.
Visit to Uttar Pradesh:
On November 6, 2018, Her Excellency Mrs. Kim Jung-sook arrived at the Amausi Airport in Lucknow.
- She was received by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.
- They attended cultural programmes at Ram Katha Parj in Ayodhya before proceeding to deepawali celebrations.
- She took part in the festivities of Deepawali and attended “Deepotsav” event where she was the Chief Guest.
- The “Deepotsav” was organized by the State Government of Uttar Pradesh and was a first where a foreign dignitary attended Diwali celebrations.
- As a part of Deepawali, a 30-feet statue of Lord Ram was installed on the banks of the Saryu River, along with that of Lord Hanuman’s idol.
- Her Excellency inaugurated the Queen Huh memorial at Queen Huh park in Ayodhya and lightened a handmade lamp on the occasion which was made by the Fine Arts department of Ram Manohar Lohiya Awadh University.
- Also around 30 lakhs lamps have been arranged on the steps of the 12 ghats as a part of the celebration.
Ayodhya and Korea have a deep historical connection through the legendary Princess Suriratna of Ayodhya, who traveled to Korea in 48 CE and married Korean King Suro.
Visit to Agra:
On November 7, 2018, on her way to Korea she visited Agra to witness the grandeur of the Taj Mahal.
On the Sidelines of her visit the following MOUs were signed:
i. Ministry of Tourism signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Government for the Republic of Korea for strengthening cooperation in the field of Tourism.
ii. Parties responsible for MOU signing are:
- Indian side: Shri. K J Alphons, Union Tourism Minister and
- Korean side: Mr. Do Jong-hwan Korean, Minister for Culture, Tourism and Sports.
iii. India and South Korea signed a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in sports.
iv. Parties responsible for MOU signing are:
Indian side: Sports Minister Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore
Korean Side: Mr. Do Jong-hwan Korean, Minister for Culture, Tourism and Sports.
v. This partnership would focus on sports such as Archery and Taekwondo where South Korea is one of the pioneer countries.
South Korea (Republic of Korea):
♦ Capital: Seoul.
♦ Currency: South Korean won.
♦ President: Moon Jae-in.
♦ Prime Minister: Lee Nak-yeon.