Malawi president gets honorary degree from Delhi University

Thursday, November 4, 2010

NEW DELHI - Four decades after he left its portals, the president of the southern African nation of Malawi, Bingu Wa Mutharika, returned to Delhi University to receive a doctor of letters degree from his alma mater here Thursday.

Mutharika, 76, who is also the current chairperson of the African Union, had done his graduation from Shri Ram College of Commerce and his Master’s from Delhi School of Economics in the 1960s.

At a short ceremony, Delhi University conferred an honorary doctor of letters on Mutharika, who is on a six-day visit to India.

In January this year, at a banquet he hosted in honour of visiting Indian Vice-President Mohammad Hamid Ansari, Mutharika reminisced about his days in Delhi as a student. “I am a product of India,” he proudly said, adding that he considered himself a “Delhiwala”.

He said his five years of study in Delhi were continuous without a break before he could return to Malawi. “That was because as a student I was always broke and didn’t have enough to come home.” Then, during the holidays, he travelled extensively in India to all the places - from Jaipur to Chennai.

On Wednesday, Mutharika met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and held discussions, especially in the energy and agriculture sectors.

During Mutharika’s current visit, India has announced a $100 million line of credit and a grant of $5 million to support the SME sector.

After his engagements in Delhi, the visiting African head of state is visiting Goa and Agra, before he leaves India Monday.

Filed under: Diplomacy

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