Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Wednesday said she was saddened that India was drawn away from her country in its "most difficult days" but had faith in the strong ties between the people of the two nations.
"I was saddened to feel that we were drawn away from India, or rather India was drawn away from us during our most difficult days," Suu Kyi said delivering the Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Lecture here.
The National League for Democracy leader, who was under house arrest for over 21 years, was referring to the period when India established diplomatic relations with the military junta in the 1990s. India had initially supported the pro-democracy movement in Myanmar.
Suu Kyi said she always has faith in the lasting friendship of India and Myanmar which was based on love and kinship between the people of the two countries.
"This is what I wish to emphasize again and again. Friendship between countries should be based on friendship between people and not friendship between governments," she said.
"Governments come and go and that is what democracy is all about. But, people remain and as long as our people remain bound in understanding and mutual respect, the friendship between our two countries will last far into the future," she said.
Suu Kyi said Myanmar had not yet achieved the goal of democracy.
"We are trying and we hope that in this last battle, the people of India will stand by us and walk by the path they were able to proceed many years before," said Suu Kyi, who is on a first visit to India in 25 years.