Modi arrives, to attend Quad meet, give UN address

RITU JHA-

 

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in the United States,  September 22 to attend the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue meeting with leaders from the United States, Japan, and Australia, and to speak at the United National General Assembly.

Dr. Shakun Malik of the Kashmir Overseas Association, shaking hand with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the latter’s arrival at Joint Base Andrews in Washington DC, Sept 22. [Photo courtesy: Shukan Malik]
Heavy rains delayed the arrival of the plane, a new Boeing 777 aircraft for VVIPs bearing the Bharat and India logos, by 20 minutes beyond the scheduled time of 5:40 pm.

More than 150 members of the Indian American diaspora carrying Indian flags were there to greet him at Joint Base Andrews in Washington, DC, along with US Department of State officials. Taranjit Singh Sandhu, India’s ambassador to the US, Defense Attaché Brigadier Anoop Singhal, Air Commodore Anjan Bhadra, and Naval Attache Commodore Nirbhaya Bapna.

“He gave 20 minutes of his time to the Indian American diaspora,” Alok Srivastava, one of the group, told indica News over the phone. “He twice shook hands with me. He was in a good mood and took selfies with people as well.”

Srivastava said Modi would stay at the ambassador’s residence.

Dr. Shakun M. Malik, president, CEO and chairperson of the Kashmiri Overseas Association, who was also present to receive and cheer Modi, told indica News, “It was raining, but about 150 people waited to greet him.”

She sounded pleased with Modi’s initiatives to bring peace and prosperity to Kashmir, said, “Now Kashmiri pandits can resettle back home, and the initiative has started where we can reclaim our lost property. We have been asked to fill the form, for the properties that had been sold in distress.”

Since there is no special community event planned with Modi, many showed up at the airport and are to attend an event titled “Let’s show the World Leaders how we celebrate our cultures,” organized by the Virginia chapter of the non-profit National Council of Asian Indian Associations on September 24 at the Lafayette Park, near the White House.

Modi has a packed four-day schedule. He is accompanied by a delegation comprising National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla and many senior officials.

He will meet CEOs of Qualcomm, Adobe, Blackstone, General Atomics and First Solar, on September 23 in Washington, DC.

During his visit, Modi will hold a bilateral meeting with US President Joe Biden at the White House on September 24, attend the QSD (also called Quad), and address the UN General Assembly on September 25.

Modi’s meeting with Biden will be the first in-person meeting between the two leaders after the latter took over as the president in January.