23:00 GMT +317 January 2020
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): India has announced a day of state mourning on Monday, to mark the passing of Oman’s Sultan Qaboos. The Indian Home Ministry said that the tricolour will be flown at half-mast. Qaboos was crucial to the friendly relationship between India and Oman over five decades.

    Indian Minister for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi will visit Oman on Monday to pay his country’s tributes following the demise of the Arab world’s longest-serving ruler Sultan Qaboos. The 79-year-old leader died on Friday.

    Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also paid respects to the Sultan, who passed away on 10 January.

    ​Sultan Qaboos bin Said Al Said served as the Sultan of Oman from 23 July 1970 until his death. The Indian government has described its relations with Oman as linked by geography, history and culture.

    Cordial relations between India and Oman are attributed to their historical maritime trade links, the intimacy of the royal family with India and the seminal role played by the Indian expatriate community in building Oman.

    The late Sultan had an Indian connection on a personal level, as he studied in India’s city of Pune in Maharashtra state. The Sultan’s father was also an alumnus of Mayo College in Rajasthan’s Ajmer city. Qaboos studied under India’s 9th President Shankar Dayal Sharma when he had served as a professor.

    The personal connection transcended into a diplomatic bonhomie between India and Oman as the Sultan gave the Indian Navy access to the Duqm Port.


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