US President Donald Trump is likely to visit India as the Chief Guest for the 2019 Republic Day function. Earlier this year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited Trump to be R-Day celebrations in January next year.
The 2019 R-Day celebration will be the last that will be organised under the present government before India goes to polls in mid-2019.
On Friday, a top Trump Administration official said that Trump looks forward to visiting India to reflect on the "amazingly positive" trajectory in India-US relationship.
"President Trump does look forward to visiting India again to reflect on what has been an amazingly positive trajectory in our relationship," said Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of South and Central Asia Region Alice Wells in response to a question on when would the US President be able to make a visit to India.
Wells added that she does not have further details as to when the President's trip to India will take place.
"I love India, give my regards to my friend PM (Narendra) Modi," Trump had told External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Monday as they exchanged pleasantries during a high-level event on counter-narcotics in New York in the ongoing 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
PM Modi has met Trump at least twice in the past year -- the first during a bilateral visit to Washington and then once on the margins of a summit in Manila.
Trump's response came after Swaraj told the US president that she has brought greetings from PM Modi.
This is not the first time Trump's 'friendship' for Modi was discussed in the public domain. In November 2017, the White House had said during a press brief that Trump likes Modi.
In February 2018, US officials had indicated that Trump has a 'strong relationship' with PM Modi while emphasising on India-US ties.
The same month, while expressing his displeasure about India's tariffs on the import of motorcycles, Trump had reportedly said at a meeting of the governors of US states at the White House, "I wasn't sure - he said it so beautifully. He's a beautiful man.”