White House: Bong Divas, Tam Bram Kids, Sikh Pajis, Gujju bhais greet Modi-Biden

“We came from San Antonio to support our PM (Modi). My son is serving in the Indian Army. He is a colonel. I feel proud that he is serving the nation,” she added.

| Updated: 23 June, 2023 12:27 am IST

WASHINGTON, DC: The chants of Modi, Modi reverberated on the White House lawns as a sizeable number of Indian Americans showered their adulation for Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Decked in resplendent Indian traditional garments, a gathering exceeding 20,000 individuals from the Indian community – from Gujarat and Maharashtra to Bengal, from Punjab to Tamil Nadu – converged at the White House, their anticipation palpable as they eagerly awaited the esteemed Prime Minister’s address.

READ MORE: India & US relationship would be a defining one in 21st century: President Biden

As though the very essence of India had embraced the corridors of power, a captivating ambience permeated the surroundings. Wherever India traverses, the magnetic pull of Bollywood follows suit.

The White House transformed into a pulsating stage, with the iconic beats of Shah Rukh Khan’s timeless hit, Chaiya Chaiya and Madhuri Dixit’s O Re Piya stirring hearts and electrifying the atmosphere.

The New Indian Executive Editor, Rohan Dua, in conversation with a member of the Indian diaspora that came to attend PM Narendra Modi’s welcome ceremony at the White House

 

The display of affection is also a sign of acknowledgement of the effort that PM Modi has made in the past nine years. On Wednesday too, PM Modi eulogised the efforts of the Indian diaspora in bringing India and the US shed their past baggage and bring them closer.

“People of the Indian community are enhancing India’s glory in the US through their hard work and dedication. You are the real strength of our relationship,” PM Modi said in his speech as he thanked President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden for letting the gates open and welcoming the diaspora.

READ MORE: Democracy is in India’s DNA: PM Modi in White House

Connecticut-based businessman Harish Shah was overpowered by his emotions as he spoke to The New Indian. “We are here for our honourable Prime Minister (Narendra) Modi. We are here to listen to him. He is a world leader now, and very soon he will be No. 1 in the world,” he said with an unmistakable sense of pride in his eyes and voice.

Dropping his guard, Ramesh Chandrarihani said he was excited to see so many people from across the country (US). “When I was waiting in the queue, I met people who came all the way from California. People came from all over the country. I am excited to see such a big crowd,” the businessman said.

Washington, DC local Rishi Banerjee felt that time would tell what difference PM Modi had made in the India-US relationship.

“Excited to welcome PM Modi here at the White House. Time will tell the difference that the meeting between PM Modi and President Biden has made both in terms of the India-US relationship and global politics,” Banerjee said.

The New Indian Executive Editor, Rohan Dua, attending PM Narendra Modi’s welcome ceremony at the White House

 

Another lady, originally from Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu and now settled in San Antonio, spoke about how proud she is that one of her sons is a Colonel in the Indian Army.

“We came from San Antonio to support our PM (Modi). My son is serving in the Indian Army. He is a colonel. I feel proud that he is serving the nation,” she added.

That PM Modi has been able to galvanise the diaspora can be seen by the fact that they are unanimous in their choice for the next Indian PM as the country goes to polls next year.

“Narendra Modi, no doubt about that,” Monica Hira from San Antonio, who runs a dry cleaning business, said, echoing the sentiments as Jai Ho Modi chants reverberated.

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