Washington: In a goodwill gesture, Speaker of US House of Representatives John Boehner has invited Prime Minister Narendra Modi to address a joint session of the US Congress at a date convenient to him.
However, Modi would not be able to address the Congress when he comes to Washington DC in the last week of September mainly because of the unpredictability of the schedule of both the House of Representatives and the Senate due to mid-term elections in November.
In a letter addressed to Modi, Speaker Boehner said there is an interest in the US House of Representatives in inviting the new Indian Prime Minister to address a Joint Meeting of the Congress.
More than 80 lawmakers had recently written to Boehner, urging him to invite Modi to address a joint session of the Congress.
A similar letter was written by several Senators to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
"If not for the unpredictability of the House schedule in late September of this year, an invitation for you to address a Joint Meeting during your upcoming trip to the United States would have been extended," Boehner wrote in his letter dated July 30, a copy of which was obtained today.
"I would be very interested in exploring with you the possibility of a visit to the United States Capitol and an address to a Joint Meeting of Congress should your travels bring you back to our country in the months and years ahead," Boehner said.
"I wish you the best of luck for a safe and successful journey to the United States in September. We look forward to working with you and your government to strengthen the relationship between the people of your country and those of the United States, and to build a more peaceful and prosperous world," Boehner said in his letter.
The letter from Boehner to Modi is said to be a rare goodwill gesture, as such invitation letters are normally issued with specific time and date.
However, Boehner has issued an open-ended letter inviting Modi to address a joint session of the Congress.