`Modi-Obama hugs defined success of Obama's India trip'

A leading Indian-American attorney has suggested that Modi-Obama hugs contributed to the success of President Barack Obama's visit to India to be the chief guest at India's Republic Day.

IANS| Last Updated: Feb 03, 2015, 15:49 PM IST

Washington: A leading Indian-American attorney has suggested that Modi-Obama hugs contributed to the success of President Barack Obama's visit to India to be the chief guest at India's Republic Day.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had broken protocol to greet Obama at the New Delhi airport with a hug, noted New York-based Ravi Batra, who is Chair of the National Advisory Council of South Asian Affairs, in an interview with an ethnic newspaper.

"Obama's trust in India's durable commitment to the rule of law, honest desire to honour the spirit of the agreements and national aspirations that embrace peace and abhor war" measured the success of Obama's India trip, he told the South Asian Times.

Modi's coming to power with a big mandate and his taking "taking exceptional risks"also helped, he said.

"Modi is mandate-rich. But that is only a 'root' cause," Batra said.

"He must be given credit for taking exceptional risks - running an American style campaign, with Arab Spring-loaded social media, and then governing as a corporate CEO."

The noted attorney also suggested that "India and Indian-Americans must divorce their partition-based Pakistan-psyche."

They should instead appreciate, Batra said that US support of Pakistan and its military for five decades has helped to reduce tension in the subcontinent and remain a nation.

"It is now a fact that America and India are global partners," he said.

Asked what else India can look forward to from warmer relations with US, Batra said "America's 'special relationship' with Great Britain will in time be judged against America's 'special relationship' with India."

"India will be the secret ingredient to a strong and durable American Dream for all," he said adding, "As an Indian-American, it doesn't get any better."

Asked if he feared that the Republicans may try to undo what Obama has wrought in India-US relations, Batra noted that Republicans too had "worked hard and took political risks to get where we were" before the Devyani Khobragade affair.

"All Indians and all Americans have a legitimate right to claim ownership of this Obama-Modi Hugs-success," he said.