Address: 31 Grange Road India House, Singapore 239702
Tel:  6737 6777  and 6238 2538 (after working hours).   Fax: 6732 6909. Email:  and
National Day: Republic Day 26th January


22 January 2020: India 71st Independence Day 

2019 Embassy Activities Round-Up

India: High Scale & Intensity Engagements

(1) India’s Minister of State Mr Hardeep Singh and Minister of External Affairs S. Jaishankar call on Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat in September 2019. (2) Ministers S. Jaishankar (orange tie) and Dr Vivian Balakrishnan (blue tie) at the India-Singapore Business & Innovation Summit. (3) Singapore’s Minister of Communication & Information and Minister-in-Charge of Trade Relations, Mr. S Iswaran, called on the Union Minister of Finance & Corporate Affairs, Smt, Nirmala Sitharaman in Delhi. (4) A record-breaking attendance at this year’s International Yoga Day. (5) High Commissioner Jawed Ashraf joined Global Indian International School students at its Gandhi Centre to celebrate the Mahatma’s 150th Anniversary.

2019 was characterized by the usual high scale, frequency and intensity of bilateral engagement and local events as also new milestones in bilateral relations. In India, Prime Minister Modi returned to office on the strength of a larger mandate in the world’s largest general election in April-May 2019. The process of bilateral engagement in Singapore, the inter-generational transition in leadership began this year.

Ministerial Visits
Ministerial visits from Singapore included those of DPM and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat, Minister of Law and Home Affairs K. Shanmugam, Minister of Education Ong Ye Kung twice, Minister of Communication and Information and Minister in-Charge of Trade Relations S. Iswaran four times, Minister for Social and Family Development and Second Minister for National Development Desmond Lee, Senior Minister of State for Defence and Foreign Affairs Dr. Mohammad Maliki bin Osman, Senior Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Manpower Sam Tan, SMS for Health and Law Edwin Tong and Senior Minister of State Zaqy Mohammad. Visits from India to Singapore were made by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Minister of External Affairs Dr. S. Jaishankar and Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Civil Aviation and Urban Development and Hardeep Puri, MOS for Commerce and Industry. Delegations from several Indian states also visited Singapore to foster closer economic partnership.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong also met in Osaka during G20 meet. PM Lee was among the six world leaders to speak at a special session at UNGA to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.

Trilateral Military Exercises
India and Singapore conducted their first trilateral exercise with Thailand and bilateral Air and Army exercises in India and naval exercise in Singapore. Prime Minister Modi gave away the awards in the second India-Singapore hackathon held in Chennai in September. Minister Iswaran launched the Global Innovation Alliance in Bengaluru in October.

Ambassador Jawed Ashraf shares how India met the challenges posed by the age of ‘digital disruption’ at the World Economic Forum in May 2019

Fintech Milestones
Fintech, innovation and startups initiatives continued to grow. After RuPay, the Indian payment card, was launched in Singapore last year, one of India’s QR payment app – BHIM, was successfully tested during Singapore Fintech Festival in November; it is ready for launch in early 2020. The two sides are collaborating on a cross-border digital hub for SMEs and building a digital financial inclusion architecture Global Stack, based on India’s India Stack. India had the highest number of foreign participants in the Singapore Fintech Festival.

Here in Singapore, the year began with a massive Reception for India’s Republic Day on January 26, which was attended by 1500 people. A major highlight of year 2019 was the India-Singapore Business and Innovation Summit on 9-10 September 2019. The event had over 4,500 registered participants, 25 sessions, nearly 100 speakers, a startup exhibition with 90 startups from India and Singapore and a gala dinner for 1800 invited guests. Five Ministers and other dignitaries from India and Singapore participated in the event.

There were several other business and technology seminars throughout the year, including on Role of States in the Indian Economy; three on the Indian Budget; ET Leadership Summit; HT Leadership Summit; Opportunities in Financial Resolution in India; Opportunities for Singapore SMEs in India; Indian SME Exports to Southeast Asia; India’s financial markets with Governor of the Reserve Bank of India; India’s debt markets with Bloomberg; and, a roadshow on tourism in India. The Indian Mission here in Singapore was pleased to support Sun Media’s “World Opportunity Forum” to mark its 20th anniversary.

Mahatma Gandhi & Guru Nanak Anniversaries
The High Commission celebrated the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi through a series of events. This included a play on the life of Gandhi by Hum Theatre and a dance interpretation of Gandhi’s famous Dandi March by Chowk Production, a Gandhi Film Festival by Tagore Society, tree planting at Global Indian International School and other events with local community organizations and schools.

The Mission also supported many events to mark the 550th birth Anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, the founder of the Sikh faith. President Halimah Yacob launched the first Sikh Heritage Day in June. DPM Heng Swee Keat was the Guest of Honour at an event at the Central Sikh Gurudwara. Minister Iswaran launched the celebrations to mark the 550th anniversary.The International Day of Yoga on June 21 was observed with a week-long yoga festival with over 175 sessions in 120 venues in Singapore.

Cultural Bonds
Culture provides a strong bond between Indian and Singapore. It was a major priority for the High Commission. This included support for the annual classical music and dance festival of the Singapore Indian Fine Arts Society (SIFAS), Dance India Asia Pacific by Apsara Arts and Kalaa Utsavam by Esplanade Theatre. India House hosted an Open House during the Singapore International Design Week in March and an art and sculpture exhibition in November.

High Commissioner joined H.E. President Halimah Yacob for Diwali lighting ceremony in Little India in September. The High Commission organized an Indian Film Festival in collaboration with the National University of Singapore (NUS) in March and also supported the South Asia International Film Festival.