US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump landed in Ahmedabad in Gujarat on Monday for his 36-hour-long India visit. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had already arrived in Ahmedabad, welcomed Trump, who is on his first visit to India after becoming the US president in 2016.
The Air Force One plane carrying Trump and wife Melania lands at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel airport at 11.37 am.
Earlier in the day, Trump tweeted in Hindi on his way to India, saying he is eager to visit the country and would be soon meeting all. On board the special Air Force One aircraft along with his delegation, he took to the microblogging site to express his eagerness and posted the tweet in Hindi: “Ham Bharat Aane Ke Liye Tatpar Hain. Ham Raste Me Hain, Kuchh Hi Ghanton Me Ham Sabse Milenge. (We are eager to visit India. We are on our way and would be soon meeting all)”. Soon came PM Modi’s reply: ‘Atithi Devo Bhava’.
The US President is accompanied by First Lady Melania, daughter Ivanka, son-in-law Jared Kushner and the top brass of his administration.
Just before his departure, Trump said he had committed to visit India long time back and he is looking forward to be with the people of India.
Trump’s maiden visit to India is expected to significantly ramp up bilateral defence and strategic ties but unlikely to produce tangible outcome in resolving thorny issues like trade tariffs.
The nearly 36-hour-long visit by Trump is also set to send across a clear message of growing congruence of interests on major geopolitical developments in the region and beyond, particularly when China has been expanding its military might and economic clout.
The US President will have a brief re-fuel stopover in Germany en-route to India.
Trump, who is seeking re-election in the US presidential elections in November, will arrive on Monday around noon in Ahmedabad in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s home state of Gujarat.
Prime Minister Modi is expected to receive Trump at the airport.
Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to greet Trump in a massive roadshow in Ahmedabad before he arrives at the newly-built Motera cricket stadium, which has a capacity of over 1,00,000 people, for the ‘Namaste Trump’ event.
‘Namaste Trump’ will be similar to the landmark ‘Howdy, Modi!’ event hosted by the Indian-American community in honour of Prime Minister Modi during his visit to Houston in September 2019.
From Ahmedabad, the US president will travel to Agra to have a glimpse of the iconic Taj Mahal. The Trump family will spend about an hour at the Taj Mahal before sunset. Then they will leave for Delhi for the main leg of the visit.
On the morning of February 25, Trump and the First Lady would be accorded a ceremonial welcome at the forecourt of the Rashtrapati Bhavan.
From there, they would go to Rajghat to pay homage at the ‘samadhi’ of Mahatma Gandhi.
It would be followed by restricted and delegation-level talks between Trump and Modi at Hyderabad House. Prime Minister Modi would host a lunch for the US president following the bilateral talks.
In the afternoon, Trump is expected to attend certain private events at the US Embassy, including a roundtable with industry representatives.
In the evening, the US president will meet President Ram Nath Kovind at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.
A banquet will be hosted by Kovind. President Trump would depart from India later that evening.