Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday wished Prime Minister Narendra Modi success for the upcoming parliamentary elections in India, the Russian Embassy in New Delhi said.

The two leaders had a telephonic conversation during which they discussed cooperation between the two countries in key areas, including defence and counter-terrorism. They exchanged warm greetings for the New Year 2019 and Modi also wished Putin and Russian people on the occasion of Christmas, which is being celebrated in Russia on Monday.

The External Affairs Ministry in New Delhi confirmed the telephonic conversation between the two leaders but there was no mention of Putin wishing Modi success in the Lok Sabha elections in the press release issued by it.

The release said the two leaders appreciated the major milestones achieved by the special and privileged strategic partnership between the two countries in the past year.

Recalling successful wide-ranging discussions in Sochi in May during their informal summit and during President Putin’s visit to New Delhi in October for the annual summit, the leaders agreed to maintain the momentum in the bilateral relations. Putin reiterated to Modi the invitation to the annual Eastern Economic Forum in September 2019.

Both leaders agreed that India-Russia cooperation played an important role in the global multilateral order. Both countries, therefore, would continue their close consultations in the United Nations, the BRICS, the SCO and other multilateral organisations.