Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who flew to the US at President Biden’s invitation to participate in the first in-person summit of Quad leaders, arrived in Washington to crowd of Indian Americans, chanting his name and waving the Indian flag.
Despite heavy rains since early in the morning, a significant number of Indian Americans had gathered at the Andrews Joint Airforce Base to welcome the Prime Minister. PM Modi was received at the airport by senior officials of the Biden Administration and India’s Ambassador to the US Taranjit Singh Sandhu. “Grateful to the Indian community in Washington DC for the warm welcome. Our diaspora is our strength. It is commendable how the Indian diaspora has distinguished itself across the world,” PM Modi tweeted.
The prime minister, who is visiting the US for the seventh time since assuming office in 2014, said that the visit is an “occasion to strengthen our strategic partnership with the US and consolidate ties with Japan and Australia”.
He had added that in his meeting with President Biden, he would review the India-US Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership and exchange views on regional and global issues of mutual interest. On the first in-person Quad Summit, PM Modi said his meeting with President Biden, Prime Minister Scott Morrison of Australia and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga of Japan would provide an opportunity to take stock of the outcomes of a virtual summit in March and “identify priorities for future engagements based on our shared vision for the Indo-Pacific region”.
A meeting with Vice President Kamala Harris, who traces her roots to India, is also on the itinerary. Referring to his first meet with her, PM Modi said he was “looking forward” to the talks to explore opportunities for cooperation, particularly in the area of science and technology. They had earlier spoken on telephone in June. The Prime Minister is also scheduled to meet a number of top executives of major American companies in Washington, including the heads of Qualcomm, Adobe, Blackstone, General Atomics and First Solar, reported news agency.
The PM will travel to New York on September 24 and address the United Nations General Assembly the next day. His speech will be centred on global challenges including the COVID-19 pandemic, the need to combat terrorism, climate change and other important issues. The last time PM Modi visited the US was in September 2019 when he and the then US President Donald Trump addressed the ‘Howdy Modi’ event in Houston.