Arun JaitleyIndia on Sunday thanked Afghanistan for conferring the country’s highest civilian honour — the Amir Amanullah Khan award — on Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit there.

Expressing gratitude to Afghan government for the prestigious award, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said it was an honour not only for the Prime Minister, but for the whole country.

Modi was conferred the award by President Ashraf Ghani yesterday during his short visit to Herat province in Afghanistan where he inaugurated a landmark dam built by India at a cost of Rs 1,700 crore.

“It’s a matter of great honour for India that the Indian Prime Minister has been conferred with the highest ever civilian award by the Afghan government. It is an honour not only for India’s Prime Minister but for the whole country for which we are grateful to the government of Afghanistan,” said Jaitley.

Modi is the first Indian and is among a handful of foreign leaders to receive the award.

Modi had also tweeted yesterday, “My deepest gratitude to the Government of Afghanistan for conferring the Amir Amanullah Khan Award.”

The award is named after Afgahn national hero Amanullah Khan who championed the cause of Afghanistan’s freedom. He was the ruler of the Emirate of Afghanistan from 1919-1929.

About Prime Minister’s visit to Qatar, Jaitley said it will help India get more investments from the Gulf country.

“In the last two years as the economy of India has picked up, the interest of global investors in India also has increased. The Prime Minister has today addressed the business community of Qatar.

“The government there, the business community and the funds have been extremely keen on investing in India and the Prime Minister’s visit to Qatar will give a great fillip to that,” said Jaitley.

The Prime Minister travelled to Qatar from Afghanistan yesterday as part of his five-nation tour.

Modi today invited Qatar’s companies to “grab” the vast opportunities for business, especially in the infrastructure sector, in India, while promising to remove “bottlenecks” identified by them.