Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday described India and America as “natural partners” as he held the first in-person meeting with Vice President Kamala Harris at the White House.
During this meeting, the vice president of America and PM Modi decided to further cement the Indo-US strategic partnership and discussed global issues of common interest, including threats to democracy, Afghanistan and the Indo-Pacific.
According to a report from the PTI, “India and America are natural partners. We have similar values, similar geopolitical interests,” Modi said in a joint media appearance with Harris, the first-ever person of Indian origin to be elected as the vice-president of the United States.
Noting that India and the US are the largest and oldest democracies, Modi said the two countries share values and their coordination and cooperation is also gradually increasing.
Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla told the media while giving details of the meeting that lasted for an hour that both the leaders appreciated that the bilateral relationship is on a sound footing.
This is the first meeting between the two leaders. Harris had earlier spoken with Modi over the phone in June during the COVID-19 crisis in India.
Modi said to Harris, “You are the source of inspiration for so many people across the world. I am completely confident that our bilateral relationship will touch new heights under President Biden and your leadership.”
Later in tweet, Modi said, “Glad to have met @VP@KamalaHarris. Her feat has inspired the entire world. We talked about multiple subjects that will further cement the India-USA friendship, which is based on shared values and cultural linkages.”
Modi invited the 56-year-old Democratic leader and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff to visit India.
“Both President Biden and you assumed office at a time when our planet faced very tough challenges. In a short time you have had many achievements to your credit be it COVID-19, climate change or the Quad,” Modi added.
The two leaders discussed the COVID-19 situation in their countries, including ongoing efforts to contain the pandemic through expedited vaccination efforts, and ensuring supply of critical medicines, therapeutics and healthcare equipment.
Harris said, amidst China”s aggressive moves in the strategically vital region, “As relates to the Indo-Pacific, the US stresses on maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific.”
India, the US and several other world powers have been talking about the need to ensure a free, open and thriving Indo-Pacific in the backdrop of China”s rising military manoeuvring in the region.