US President Donald Trump and his wife Melania have visited the Taj Mahal on the primary day of their trip to India.The iconic “monument to love” was the second stop during a 36-hour official visit, Mr. Trump’s first to India. Earlier within the day, he landed in Gujarat, the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who greeted him alongside tens of thousands of Indians.
The leaders of the world’s two largest democracies will meet on Tuesday. No big deals are expected to be signed. Mr. Trump received a vibrant welcome within the northern city of Agra, including dancers dressed as peacocks and horses. While Mr. Modi wasn’t present, he was greeted by an in-depth ally of his, Yogi Adityanath, the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh state, where Agra is found.
The Trumps then left for the Taj Mahal, a 17th Century marble mausoleum built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his queen, Mumtaz Mahal. It is perhaps India’s most famous monument and is typically a part of every visiting dignitary’s itinerary.
Earlier, in Gujarat’s Ahmedabad city, Mr. Trump addressed an enormous crowd at the Motera cricket stadium.
“Namaste,” he began to thunderous applause, before happening to ask several Indian icons, from history to cricket to Bollywood. “India will always hold a really special place in our hearts,” he added.
He also had words of praise for Mr. Modi: “Everybody loves him but I will be able to tell you this, he’s very tough. you’re not just the pride of Gujarat, you’re case in point that with diligence, Indians can accomplish anything they need .”
However, he struggled to pronounce several Indian words – from Ahmedabad, the town where he was speaking, to Swami Vivekananda, an Indian philosopher, greatly admired by Mr. Modi. He also called the Vedas – ancient Hindu texts – “Vestas”.
He ended his speech by saying: “God bless India, God bless us of America – we love you, we love you considerably .” He spoke after Mr. Modi, and therefore the BBC’s Rajini Vaidyanathan says crowds began leaving midway through the US president’s speech.