India, US take pride in their diversity; institutions in both countries: PM Modi

Washington: The societies and institutions of both the US and India are based on democratic values and both countries take pride in their diversity, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said at the ceremonial welcome at the White House ahead of his official talks with US President Joe Biden.

The constitution of both countries begins with the “three words -We the People- as President Biden just mentioned”, said Modi, who is on his first state visit to the US.

Thanking Biden, his wife Jill Biden and the US administration for a warm and grand welcome, Modi said this is the first time the gates of the White House have been opened for Indian-Americans in such large numbers.

“This grand welcome ceremony at the White House today is an honour and pride for the 1.4 billion people of India. It is also an honour for more than 4 million people of Indian origin in the US,” Modi said.

He said both countries take pride in their diversity, and “both of us believe in the fundamental principle of ‘In the interest of all, for the welfare of all'”.

He said about three decades ago, he had come to America as a common man and at that time, he had seen the White House from the outside.

“After becoming the PM, I’ve come many times, but today for the first time the doors of the White House have been opened for the Indian-American community in such large numbers,” he added. He said Indian community members were enhancing India’s glory in the US through their hard work and dedication Noting that in the post-Covid era, world order was taking a new shape, the Prime Minister said our friendship will be instrumental in enhancing the strength of the whole world.

India and the US are committed to working together for global good and peace, stability and prosperity, he said.

He said he was thankful to have an opportunity to address the US Congress for the second time. “I am deeply grateful for this honour”.