`73% Indians confident of Obama’s abilities`

PM Manmohan Singh has also received extremely positive ratings (87% favourable).

Washington: When President Barack Obama
travels to India next month, he will be visiting a country
where both he and America are immensely popular along with its
own leaders like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress
President Sonia Gandhi, according to an opinion poll.

More than seven in ten Indians have confidence in Obama
and about two-thirds express a favourable opinion of the
United States, it said.

Indians are also positive about their own country`s role
in world affairs and they are optimistic about its economic
future, while they see Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and Pakistan as
greatest threats to the country, said the Pew Research Centre.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh receives extremely positive
ratings (87 percent favourable), as do Congress
president Sonia Gandhi (87 percent) and her son Rahul Gandhi
(85 percent).

"Obama, who is scheduled to visit India and other
Asian countries in November, is widely popular: 73 percent
express confidence that Obama will do the right thing in world
affairs," the poll said.

Pew said the US enjoys a largely positive image in
India. Nearly two-thirds (66 percent) express a favourable
opinion of the US, although this is down from 76 percent last

By contrast, only 51 percent rate Russia favourably,
and even fewer feel this way about the EU (36 percent) or
China (34 percent).

While many publics around the world continue to believe
the US acts unilaterally in world affairs, Indians see a more
multilateral America, the survey said.

More than eight in ten (83 percent) say the US takes the
interests of countries like India into account when it makes
foreign policy decisions -- the highest percentage among the
21 nations surveyed outside the US, it said.

"This view has become increasingly common among Indians
over the last eight years; in 2002, only 51 percent said the US considered their interests," it said.