WASHINGTON: A warm handshake, mutual praise and talk of the two democracies converging on a wide range of issues. It was a positive start as Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump, sporting his trademark red tie, sat down for talks in the White House on June 26 to map the way forward for the India-US relationship for the next four years.
Mr Modi looked happy as he engaged in small talk with the US First Couple at the South Portico of the White House as the leaders of the world’s largest and oldest democracies walked together for their first full-spectrum meeting.
“…such a great Prime Minister,” Mr Trump lavished praise on his Indian guest as the two leaders were joined by their respective delegations. “I’ve been speaking with you and reading about you and you’ve done a great job economically India’s doing very well. And in so many other ways, I congratulate you,” said the US president, known for his flamboyance and mercurial temperament.
Mr Modi profusely thanked his American host for welcoming him and his delegation, and underlined that it was an honour not only for him, but for 1.25 billion people of India.
The two leaders are understood to have discussed a wide array of issues, including scaling up economic relations and galvanising their burgeoning defence partnership. Mr Trump thanked the Indian leader for purchasing American defence equipment, and added with his trademark swagger: “nobody makes it better than we do.”
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