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PM Narendra Modi’s First US Visit: What to Expect as Visa Ban Issue Subsides?

Prime Minister  Narendra Modi answering the questions of the children at the "Teachers' Day" function, at Manekshaw Auditorium, in New Delhi on September 05, 2014. (PIB Photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi answering the questions of the children at the “Teachers’ Day” function, at Manekshaw Auditorium, in New Delhi on September 05, 2014. (PIB Photo)

The White House said it is looking forwatd to welcoming Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who will visit US later this month to bolster economic ties, with the visa ban issue that has reverberated for over a decade between him and Washington DC.

The White House on Monday declared, “President (Barack) Obama looks forward to welcoming Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India to the White House on September 29-30, 2014.” Modi would attend a private dinner hosted by US President Obama at the White House.

On Modi’s visit, the White House press secretary said, “The two leaders will discuss a range of issues of mutual interest in order to expand and deepen the US-India strategic partnership.”

The issues include accelerating economic growth, bolstering security cooperation and collaborating in activities that bring long-term benefits to both countries as well as the world will be discussed by the leaders.

However, the talks will also focus on regional issues, including current developments in Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq, where India and the United States can work together with partners towards a positive outcome.

According to the White House statement, “The President looks forward to working with the Prime Minister to fulfil the promise of the US-India strategic partnership for the benefit of both our citizens and the world.”

Modi may also meet his Pakistani counterpart PM Nawaz Sharif, who will be in the US from September 22 to 27, on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session. Modi is to begin his US visit on September 26 in New York.

A grand public event at the Madison Square Garden will be attended by Modi on September 28, where he will interact with the Indian American community.

While US get set to welcome Modi for his visit, it also paves way for the end of Modi’s visa ban. The US denied Modi a visa and had blacklisted him in 2005 over the Gujarat riots for his alleged role as the Chief Minister of the state in 2002.

With regards to Mr. Modi’s forthcoming meeting with the U.S. President Barack Obama, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said, “It will be a strong government that will be speaking to President Obama.”

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