The ambassador of Kyrgyzstan to India, Asein Isaev, had been in India barely four months when the invite extended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to his country’s President Sooronbay Sharipovich Jeenbekov to attend his government’s swearing-in, took him and his government by surprise. President Jeenbekov, in fact, was in Kazakhstan and was to have gone on to Saudi Arabia when the invite came. The invite was sent out to President Jeenbekov as Kyrgyzstan is the Chair of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), a sub-regional grouping which will be meeting in the capital Bishkek on June 13 and 14. Other than President Jeenbekov, all the other leaders who attended the swearing-in were from Bimstec member states. In this interview with SNI Deputy Editor Parul Chandra, Ambassador Isaev, among other things, says India’s entry into the grouping has enhanced its potential and influence.