Order of the Druk Gyalpo - Bhutan's Highest Civilian Honour - Seeker's Thoughts

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Order of the Druk Gyalpo - Bhutan's Highest Civilian Honour

On 22 March,24 , Prime Minister Narendra Modi made history as the first foreign Head of Government to receive Bhutan's highest civilian honour: the Order of Druk Gyalpo. This award was bestowed upon him by His Majesty King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck himself at an award ceremony held in Thimphu.

Modi has demonstrated nation-building and people-focused leadership, driving economic advancement and India?s rise as a global power.

What is the Order of Druk Gyalpo?

The Order of Druk Gyalpo is Bhutan's highest honour and bestowed in recognition of lifetime achievements. As its recipient only four people have ever received this prestigious accolade in history.

On Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi received the Bhutanese King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck's highest honour: he became the first foreign Head of Government ever honored with this recognition from Bhutan. PM Modi thanked Bhutanese people for the warm reception, vowing to deepen ties between India and Bhutan under the "Neighbourhood First" policy.

He expressed his delight and dedication of the award to 140 crore Indians, thanking Bhutanese Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay for offering such a warm and unique welcome. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is on a two-day State visit to this Himalayan kingdom; earlier he met King Jigme Dorji at Tashichho Dzong palace in Thimphu.

Who is a recipient of the Order of Druk Gyalpo?

Modi is the inaugural recipient of this prestigious award from Bhutan for his exceptional contribution to strengthening bilateral ties between India and Bhutan and people-centric leadership which strongly aligns with Bhutan's national vision of becoming self-reliant and developed nation.

This Order comprises a breast star and sash badge, established in 2008 as the pinnacle of Bhutan's honour system and taking precedence over all orders, decorations and medals. Previous recipients have included His Majesty the King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, Queen Grandmother Ashi Kesang Choden and Je Thrizur Tenzin Dendup.

On Friday at a ceremony in Thimphu, His Majesty the King bestowed an award upon Prime Minister Narendra Modi as part of an awarding ceremony. PM Modi expressed his thanks and dedicated it to all 140 crore Indians residing within Bhutanese territory. Additionally, he looked forward to further strengthening and deepening India-Bhutan ties and thanked its people for welcoming him warmly and wished them success for future endeavors.

Why was the Order of Druk Gyalpo conferred on PM Modi?

The Druk Gyalpo is Bhutan's highest decoration and its conferral on PM Modi is unprecedented among foreign heads of government. This honor signifies India's special relationship with Bhutan.

The citation saluted Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his contribution in deepening India-Bhutan relations and people-centric leadership, noting how India became the fastest growing economy worldwide as well as increased moral authority and global influence under his guidance.

He stands as an extraordinary embodiment of national, regional and global leadership. Committed to driving forward progress that aligns with Bhutan's goal of becoming self-reliant and carbon neutral nation.

King Jigme Singye Wangchuck of Bhutan announced Prime Minister Modi's award during his two-day state visit there, part of India's "Neighbourhood First" policy. PM Modi previously received the Legion of Merit award from the US government while Russia presented him with its highest civilian honour, "The Order of St Andrew."

What is the significance of the Order of Druk Gyalpo?

The Order of Druk Gyalpo is Bhutan's highest honor for lifetime achievements, taking precedence over any other orders, decorations or medals awarded in its name. Prime Minister Narendra Modi became the first foreign Head of Government ever to receive this prestigious recognition from Bhutan.

On his two-day State visit, Prime Minister Modi reiterated India's dedication to strengthening and broadening ties with Bhutan. Both nations signed several MoUs covering areas like energy, trade, digital connectivity and space cooperation.

Bhutan was recognized for making progress towards their goal of carbon neutrality, and PM Modi expressed gratitude for their warm welcome on his visit, with people lining the 45km from Paro airport to Thimphu to greet and thank him. PM Modi shared video footage showing his interaction with people of Bhutan dancing to Gujarati songs; PM Modi dedicated this award to all 1.4 billion Indian people as well.

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