Mumbai– Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will arrive in Mumbai on January 18 for a day as part of his upcoming four-day visit to India, a top official said here on Tuesday.
During his visit to the country’s commercial and glamour capital, he is scheduled to address a meeting of the India-Israel Business Summit in which top names from the Indian corporate world are expected to participate.
Later, Netanyahu will speak at a mega-cultural gathering called ‘Shalom Bollywood’, or Salute Bollywood, in which top Bollywood actors, directors and producers will be present, a spokesperson for Israeli Consulate General told IANS.
He will also pay homage to the victims of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack in which one of the targeted sites was the Jewish centre of Chabad House in Colaba.
The Israel Prime Minister will be accompanied by the 11-year old Moshe Holtzberg, who as a toddler 10 years ago survived the dastardly terror strikes by Lashkar-e-Taiba attackers on Chabad House.
Moshe’s parents were felled by the terrorists’ bullets but he was saved by his Indian nanny, Sandra Samuels, and taken out to safety.
The Mumbai terror strikes left a total of 166 persons dead before nine terrorists were killed and one was arrested alive after the 60-hour-long anti-terrorist operation by combined security forces.
In fact, Moshe had met Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the latter’s visit to Israel in July last year and was very excited about visiting his birthplace Mumbai and Chabad House where his parents, Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and Rivka Holtzberg, were killed along with six others.
At their emotional meeting, Modi had invited Moshe to come and live in India for as long as he desired for which, he said, he would arrange long-term visas to him and his family.
Next week, Moshe is likely to accompanied by his grandparents Shimon and Yehudit Rosenberg, nanny Samuels and others during their visit to Chabad House, and celebrate his Bar Mitzvah, a ceremony for Jewish boys attaining 13 years — comparable to the Hindu thread ceremony.
Netanyahu will be the first Israeli Prime Minister to visit India in 15 years after the visit of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in 2003, and only the second to tour India since 1992 when India-Israel established diplomatic relations.
Modi became the first ever Indian Prime Minister to visit Israel in July 2017 as part of the silver jubilee celebrations of India-Israel diplomatic ties. (IANS)