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Monday, 11 July 2016
Why Indian PM Narendra Modi did not get 21-gun salute
“The national anthems of Kenya and India were played by the Kenya Defence Forces band, followed by the firing of 19 cannon shots,” reads a statement from State House.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Mod inspects a guard of honour mounted by a detachment of the Kenya Air Force. Image: PSCU
Narendra Modi, who is on a 2-day state visit, then inspected a guard of honour mounted by a detachment of the Kenya Air Force before holding bilateral talks with Uhuru. Modi is expected to leave the country later in the day.
So, why did Narendra Modi not get a 21-gun salute yet he is a prime minister just like Netanyahu?
In Kenya, 21-gun salute is usually accorded visiting heads of state.
PM Modi greets Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto during his official reception at State House, Nairobi, on July 11. Image: PSCU
It is only under exceptional circumstances, like in Netanyahu’s case, that heads of government get the honor.
Narendra Modi, as the prime minister of India, is a head of government and chief adviser to the president. President Pranab Mukherjee is the head of state.
Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu got a 21-gun salute when he visited President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House. Image: PSCU
Netanyahu is also the head of government but he is the most powerful figure in Israeli politics. President Reuven Rivlin is the head of state.
The president’s powers are said to be ceremonial and that could explain why PM Netanyahu got the 21-gun salute at State House.
In Africa, a similar political arrangement where the prime minister is more powerful than that president is in Ethiopia.