United Nations, Sep 25: US President Donald Trump sent his regards to Prime Minister Narendra Modi through External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to whom he met a high-level event on counter-narcotics at United Nations on Monday. During his brief interaction with Swaraj, Donald Trump called PM Modi his friend and said he loves India.
After the conclusion of the event, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley warmly hugged Swaraj and introduced her to Trump. When Swaraj told the US President that she had brought greetings from PM Narendra Modi, Trump responded, "I love India, give my regards to my friend PM Modi," Indian diplomatic sources told news agency PTI.
Swaraj attended the Global Call to Action on the World Drug Problem presided by Trump as the high-level week of the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly at the United Nations. In June last year, Trump hosted PM Modi at the White House, which was described as the "first dinner for a foreign dignitary at the White House under this (President Trump's) administration" by the White House.
Recently, a well-known American author, Bob Woodward, claimed PM Modi wanted to develop a personal bond with Trump. Modi wanted to have dinner with Trump at Camp David, the picturesque presidential resort; however, Washington stuck to the scheduled programme, Woodward stated in his book titled 'Fear: Trump in the White House'.
"The prime minister of India, Narendra Modi, who had been courted assiduously by (Barack) Obama, was coming for a visit to the United States in June to see Trump. India was the counterweight to Pakistan, which was giving the new administration as much trouble as it had given previous ones by hedging maddeningly on terrorism. Modi wanted to go to Camp David and have dinner, bond with Trump," Woodward claimed.
"'It's not in the cards,' Priebus told McMaster. 'We're just going to do dinner here. It's what the president wants.'," Woodward quotes Priebus as saying. This made McMaster angry. He (McMaster) understood the strategic importance of India, a sworn enemy of Pakistan. Outreach and strong relations were essential. The later event for Modi was a "no-frills" cocktail reception. The working dinner was at the White House," Woodward, the famed investigative journalist, further states in the book.