ANI Photo | “Great honour to escort PM Modi to his historic address to joint session of US Congress”: Indian-American Shri Thanedar

Indian-American Congressman Shri Thanedar said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the US is “historic.” He called it an “honour” to escort PM Modi to his address at the joint session of the US Congress.
In an exclusive interview with ANI, Shri Thanedar said, “This is an important visit and this is a historic visit. Not only this is important for the world’s oldest democracy, which is the United States, and the largest democracy, which is India, but it’s not just important for these two countries, it is also important for the world because peace in the India-Pacific region, Indian Ocean region, is very, very important. And this historic relationship will ensure that we have peace in that region.”
“It is a great honour for me to be able to come and be able to escort Mr Modi to his historic address, to the joint session of the US. Congress,” Shri Thanedar said. He recalled his life in Karnataka, where he was born and lived in India for 24 years of life before migrating to the US.
Shri Thanedar called the ties between India and US “good” and stressed that the two nations need to be more stronger allies. He further said that India needs to rethink on its re-alignment policy and work together to have a joint collaboration in space, defence, education and commerce.
At the invitation of US President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a state visit to the US. The visit will commence in New York where the PM will lead the celebrations of the International Day of Yoga at the United Nations Headquarters on June 21. PM Modi will then travel to Washington DC, where he will receive a ceremonial welcome at the White House on June 22 and meet President Biden to continue their high-level dialogue, according to Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) press release. He will also address the joint session of the US Congress on June 22.
In response to the question regarding the ties between India and the US, Shri Thanedar said, “The relationship is good. But, it can be better, we need to be more stronger allies than we have been as you know. Historically, India has taken a non-alignment position and India had similar relationship with Russia and the United States. But, now the United States is the only superpower. The United States is the oldest democracy, as opposed to Russia, who has encroached on a sovereign country like Ukraine. It is run by Putin.”
He added, “So, I think India needs to rethink its non-alignment policy. And it would be better for the people of India, people of America and the people of the world if India and United States work together, have a joint collaboration in space and in defence, in education, in commerce. Many Indian Americans have done, contributed significantly to the growth of American economy. And this relationship is very, very important. And it is time for India to put its full trust into the United States and develop a very, very strong relationship.”
Indian-American Congressman noted that there will be a number of agreements signed between the two nations during PM Modi’s visit to the US. He further said that there will be a substantial amount of agreement for the purchase of defence equipment between India and the US.
Shri Thanedar acknowledged the existing good relationship between India and the US but stressed the potential for further improvement and a closer alliance.
Shri Thanedar said, “We expect in this visit a number of agreements both in commerce will be work done between US companies investing in India, Indian companies bringing business to the United States. There will also be a substantial amount of agreement for purchase of defence equipment. And that way India can get the most latest, the best equipment from United States. And a military partnership, a defence partnership is just as important as a space or technology or education is important.”
He called for the two largest and oldest democracies, the United States and India, to unite and counter China’s aggression.
“China is perhaps the single most important reason why the United States and India need to join hands and become closest allies. China has, as we know, been aggressive militarily on the northern border of India. China has been aggressive towards the United States in its unfair trade practices, its unfair labour practices, and incorrect environmental policies. So it is important that we stop this China’s aggression. China also has now close relationship with Russia. So, it is aligning itself with the dictatorial Russia and it is important for the United States and India, the two largest and oldest democracies to come together, join hands and stop this aggression by China,” he added.

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