Monday, 30th October 2017

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Trump arrives in Delhi after visiting Agra

The US President had earlier gone to Sabarmati Ashram

By PTI in Ahmedabad
  • Published 24.02.20, 12:20 PM
  • Updated 25.02.20, 12:10 AM
  • 4 mins read
  •  
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Donald Trump tries spinning a 'charkha', while First Lady Melania Trump looks on, at Sabarmati Ashram, in Ahmedabad, Monday, February 24, 2020. PTI/DD NEWS

US President Donald Trump arrived in New Delhi on Monday evening for the main leg of his maiden trip to India during which he will hold extensive talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Trump is accompanied by wife Melania, daughter Ivanka, son-in-law Jared Kushner and the top brass of his administration.

After attending the 'Namaste Trump' event at Motera stadium in Ahmedabad, he and his delegation travelled to Agra where they visited the Taj Mahal.

Trump was received at the Delhi airport by Union minister Hardeep Singh Puri and a number of senior officials.

He will be accorded a ceremonial welcome at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Tuesday morning. Trump will also pay tributes to Mahatma Gandhi at Rajghat.

Modi and Trump will later hold restricted and delegation-level talks at Hyderabad House.

The US President will be staying at ITC Maurya hotel.

Trump visits Sabarmati Ashram

Trump and his wife Melania on Monday paid tribute to Mahatma Gandhi at Sabarmati Ashram, which was home to the Mahatma between 1917 and 1930 during India's freedom struggle.

Modi, who reached the Ashram a few minutes earlier, showed Trump and the US First Lady 'Hriday Kunj', a room inside the Ashram where Gandhiji and his wife Kasturba lived. Modi explained the importance of this place in India's freedom struggle.

During the visit, Trump and Melania also tried their hands on the charkha (khadi spinning wheel). Melania also helped Trump in weaving khadi on charkha.

Before leaving, Trump wrote a message in the visitors' book of the Ashram. ”To my great friend Prime Minister Modi - Thank you for this wonderful visit,” wrote Trump and signed the message. It was also signed by Melania.

The Trumps were in the Ashram for around 15 minutes. Modi also presented “Three Wise Monkeys,” a larger version of one belonging to Mahatma Gandhi, as a memento to the US President. Trump and Modi then resumed their roadshow till Motera stadium.

Modi welcomes Trump, Melania

US President Donald Trump arrived in Ahmedabad on Monday for the first leg of his India trip.

The plane carrying Trump and his wife Melania landed at the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel international airport in Ahmedabad at 11.37am, officials said.

It was scheduled to land at 11.40am.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had reached Ahmedabad over an hour before Trump did, was present at the airport to welcome the US President at the airport.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi greets US President Donald Trump as his wife Melania Trump looks on, upon their arrival at the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport in Ahmedabad Monday, February 24, 2020
Prime Minister Narendra Modi greets US President Donald Trump as his wife Melania Trump looks on, upon their arrival at the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport in Ahmedabad Monday, February 24, 2020 Twitter/@PIB_India

In Ahmedabad, Trump will visit Mahatma Gandhi's Sabarmati Ashram, take part in a roadshow with Modi and jointly address over one lakh people at a cricket stadium, before heading for Agra to see the iconic Taj Mahal with Melania.

Trump, who is also accompanied by daughter Ivanka, son-in-law Jared Kushner and top brass of his administration, will get a taste of India's cultural melange during his high-optics Gujarat itinerary, after the bonhomie between the two leaders at the 'Howdy, Modi!' event in Houston last year.

The US President and Modi will participate in a roadshow from the airport to Sabarmti Ashram and from there to the newly-built Motera cricket stadium, where over a lakh people are expected to be present for the 'Namaste Trump' event.

Dance groups and singers from different parts of the country will be performing on stages that are dotting the 22-km route of the 'India roadshow' in the city.

Huge billboards of the two leaders and replicas of historic places in Gujarat have also been placed along the roads where people will greet the two leaders.

Over 10,000 police personnel, besides officials of the United States Secret Service, and personnel of the National Security Guards (NSG) and the Special Protection Group (SPG) have been deployed for the high profile visit.

The seventh US President to visit India, Trump on Sunday retweeted a video in which his face was superimposed on the hit Indian movie-character Bahubali, showing him as a great saviour.

Modi will accompany Trump to the Sabarmati Ashram, which was home to Mahatma Gandhi from 1917-1930 during India's freedom struggle.

Several world leaders including Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe have visited Sabarmati Ashram in recent years.

Ashram secretary Amrut Modi said Trump will spend 15 minutes at the place.

"Trump will visit the 'Hriday Kunj'. If he wishes, he will spin a charkha (spinning wheel). We will also gift him a coffee-table book, and a book containing 150 quotations of Gandhi," the ashram official said.

Hriday Kunj is a room on the Ashram premises where Mahatma Gandhi and his wife Kasturba Gandhi had lived for 12 years between 1918 and 1930.

The ashram official said the US President would be briefed about Gandhiji and the importance of charkha as a symbol of self-reliance.

There will be a cultural extravaganza at the Motera stadium during the 'Namaste Trump' event, where Trump and Modi will address the gathering.

Bollywood singer Kailash Kher and some Gujarati folk singers will perform at the stadium, officials of the Gujarat Cricket Association said.

Students of various government and private schools have also been roped in to perform at cultural events and they have been practicing for days, an official said.

Billboards with slogans hailing Indo-US relations and having pictures of Trump and Modi walking together, shaking hands, and waving at the crowd during the 'Howdy Modi' event are dotting the city.

Modi arrives in Ahmedabad'

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived at the Ahmedabad International Airport on Monday ahead of US President Donald Trump's visit to the city, where the two leaders will take part in the "Namaste Trump" event at Motera Stadium after holding a roadshow.

Modi reached Ahmedabad at 10.25am, around one-and-a-half hours before the arrival of Trump and his delegation.

He will receive Trump and US First Lady Melania Trump upon their arrival aboard the Air Force One flight, scheduled to land here at around 11.40am, officials said.

Trump and Modi will participate in a roadshow from the airport to the Sabarmti Ashram and from there to the newly-built Motera cricket stadium, where over a lakh people are expected to be present for the 'Namaste Trump' event.

Dance groups and singers from different parts of the country will be performing on stages that are dotting the 22-km route of the 'India roadshow' in the city.

Huge billboards of the two leaders and replicas of historic places in Gujarat have also been placed along the roads where people will greet the two leaders.