On July 13th, during his 2-day diplomatic visit to France, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was bestowed with the highest honor of the nation, the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour, by French President Emmanuel Macron.
As a guest of honor, the Prime Minister attended France’s Bastille Day parade, a significant annual celebration marking the country’s national day. The parade included an Indian tri-services contingent, showcasing the close ties between India and France. Additionally, Indian Air Force aircraft performed a fly-past during the event, adding to the festivities and showcasing the cooperation between the two nations.
About The Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour
The Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour is the highest French decoration, both civil and military. It is awarded to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to France in any field of endeavor. The award was established by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1802, and it has been presented to over 800,000 people since then.
The Grand Cross is the highest of five degrees of the Legion of Honour. The other degrees are:
- Knight (Chevalier)
- Officer (Officier)
- Commander (Commandeur)
- Grand Officer (Grand Officier)
The Grand Cross is awarded to individuals who have made “eminent services to the Nation”. These services can be in any field, including politics, the military, the arts, science, or business.
The Grand Cross is a very prestigious award, and it is only awarded to a select few. Some of the most famous recipients of the Grand Cross include:
- Winston Churchill
- Albert Einstein
- Marie Curie
- Nelson Mandela
- Mother Teresa
The Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour is a silver cross with five gold stars. The cross is suspended from a red ribbon with green stripes. The recipient of the Grand Cross is also entitled to wear a miniature of the cross on their lapel.
The Grand Cross is a very rare and distinguished award. It is a testament to the individual’s outstanding contributions to France.
France Official Statement
As stated on the official website, the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour is an honor awarded for exceptional achievements and contributions to the nation, both in civilian and military capacities. Foreign individuals may receive the Legion of Honor if they have provided services to France, such as cultural or economic contributions, or have supported causes championed by France.
State visits also serve as an opportunity to confer the Legion of Honor upon official dignitaries, in line with diplomatic reciprocity, and to support France’s foreign policy objectives. The award criteria reflect the recognition of individuals who have made significant and noteworthy contributions to the nation or have fostered strong relations with France.
The award of the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the highest French honor in military and civilian orders, marks a historic moment as he becomes the first Indian Prime Minister to receive this recognition. By joining a distinguished list of global leaders and eminent personalities, this honor from France further enhances his international stature. It also adds to the remarkable series of prestigious awards and honors bestowed upon him by various nations across the world. The recognition reflects the acknowledgment of Prime Minister Modi‘s significant contributions and leadership on both national and international fronts.
The award of the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour to Modi is a significant gesture of friendship and cooperation between India and France. It is a recognition of the strong ties that exist between the two countries.
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