New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi could not have been clearer when he went all out to congratulate Donald Trump on his victory at the U.S. presidential hustings.
The PM wants to strengthen ties with the United States. He is even planning a meeting with the next President of the most powerful country on earth, sources said.
India expects Trump’s victory to cement the bilateral relations, which have been on the mend for at least two decades.
The Indian establishment expects to see another face of Trump as an administrator.
If there was a theme running through the business tycoon’s speeches in the last one year, it was U.S. superiority in all aspects.
He had a U.S.-centric perspective on everything including commerce, immigration, global security and military alliances.
Trump would take oath as U.S. President on January 20 with ideas starkly in contrast with those of his predecessor, Barack Obama.
Indian officials will be busy for the next 70 days up to the presidential oath, striking a chord with the core members of Team Trump. This period will prove valuable to gather insights into Trump’s actual thinking about issues such as economic growth, immigration and climate change.
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj’s key aides, including National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and External Affairs Secretary S Jayasankar, are known to be close to the Obama administration. They are also in contact with Trump’s men.
Navtej Sarna, India’s new Ambassador in Washington DC, will also strive to ensure cordial relations with the new team.
Modi himself wants to arrange a detailed one-on-one with Trump as soon as he moves in to the White House, top officials in New Delhi suggest.
Such an interaction will lay the groundwork for the relations between India and the Unites States over the next four years. This meeting may have to wait until Trump is sworn in.
Modi and his team are anxious to ensure Trump’s support to India’s attempt to enter the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group. Another area of interest is Trump’s handling of the policy towards China.