Confirming his first presidential visit to India, the White House on Tuesday, confirmed that US President Donald Trump will visit India on February 24-25. Moreover, the Trump administration confirmed that he will be accompanied by the First Lady Melania Trump and will visit Delhi and Gujarat. The trip - which is his first foreign visit since his impeachment acquittal, will strengthen U.S.-India strategic partnership, stated the White House. PM Modi had previously held a mega rally in Texas last year - 'Howdy, Modi!' where he shared the stage with Trump.
President @realDonaldTrump & @FLOTUS will travel to India from February 24-25 to visit Prime Minister @narendramodi!— The White House (@WhiteHouse) February 10, 2020
The trip will further strengthen the U.S.-India strategic partnership & highlight the strong & enduring bonds between the American & Indian people. 🇺🇸 🇮🇳
Earlier on January 30, Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani revealed that Trump will visit the Sabarmati Riverfront in Gujarat during his India visit. India had invited Trump to grace the Republic Day parade as chief guest, but due to scheduling issues, Trump could not plan his visit to India from January 24-26. Prominent leaders like Japan and Israel prime ministers Shinzo Abe and Benjamin Netanyahu respectively have visited the riverfront previously. Trump's predecessor, Barack Obama, had travelled to India twice, in 2010 and 2015.
As a precursor to long-term Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between New Delhi and Washington, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer will be on India's visit to finalise the trade deal. India has reportedly sought to restore preferential trade status under the Generalized System of Preference (GSP), which was terminated by the Trump administration last year. "President Trump's trip to India is timely in view of the bilateral trade issues that need to be resolved and in light of the collaborations between the US and India in various realms," M R Rangaswami, Indian-American philanthropist and head of Indiaspora, told PTI.
Recently, the US Congress - which is controlled by the Democratic party, impeached Donald Trump on December 18, 2019, on both charges - abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. But the Senate - controlled by the Republicans, voted to acquit Trump on both charges, with only one Republican lawmaker - Mitt Romney voted to charge Trump of high crimes. Trump was impeached when a formal House inquiry found that Trump had solicited a foreign power - Ukraine's - help in his 2020 re-election bid by withholding military aid to Ukraine unless Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky made a public announcement of a probe into former Vice-president Joe Biden.
Previously, in September 2019, Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a week-long visit culminating in the 74th Session of the UN General Assembly. Prior to his UN Address, he gave an electrifying address in Houston to over 50,000 members of the Indian diaspora at a mega community, while sharing the stage with several top American leaders including Trump. In the US President's address, Trump celebrated the India-US relationship and said that together the countries will deepen their ties.