United States President Donald Trump will make his first official trip to India today. His two-day visit to Ahmedabad, Agra and New Delhi comes months before the American election in November.
Shortly before his departure from Washington, DC, on Sunday night, President Trump said: “We will be with millions and millions. I get along very well with PM Modi… he is a friend,” he said, adding that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had told him “this (“Namaste, Trump”) will be the biggest event they have ever had”.
The first day of Trump’s tour he would visit has Ahmedabad and Agra. The Ahmedabad visit would be a spectacle where he would be received in a big reception at the newly-built Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Cricket Stadium – the world’s largest stadium.
The event will showcase India’s rich and diverse culture. Dubbed as ‘Namaste, Trump’ is drawing a parallel alternate for ‘Howdy Modi!’ that was organised for PM Modi last year in Texas. A road show with at least a hundred thousand people would line up between the Airport and the stadium to welcome him, reports claimed.
The local administration in Ahmedabad and Agra have gone berserk with the arrangements. The route that Trump’s convoy would take has been relaid and beautified. The Ahmedabad municipality built long walls to hide poor slum dwellers, and this has received huge criticism. In Agra, similar scenes were witnessed but huge banners and hoardings were used instead of walls.
The Trumps would visit Agra to see the iconic Taj Mahal.
On Tuesday, the second day of Trump’s visit is when business comes into focus. Talks on trade, tariff, defense equipment could be the positives agendas but India’s purchase of Russian missile system, the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act, Jammu and Kashmir could be some key points that India may have to answer to.
Donald Trump would be the eighth American president to visit India. On the outlook his visit is seen as a visit of spectacle rather than substance, but the outcome of their meeting could only illuminate what was it actually.