India Day in the White House
Tuesday November 24th, 2009 Washington DC.
Anju Garg/ S. Dabgotra
It was a proud day for all Indo-Americans as President Obama and Mrs. Obama hosted the His Excellency Dr. Manmohan Singh and Mrs. Gursharan Kaur for the first state visit to the White House. All the roads leading to the White house had Indian and the American flags flying together. All visitors to the White house were given an American and an Indian flag. Indian colors were everywhere. On his arrival Dr. Manmohan Singh was given, Ruffles and Flourishes and Hail the chief honors followed by the Nineteen-Gun salute.
In the East room of the White house a smaller more intimate welcome ceremony was hosted. The ceremony started with National Anthem of Republic of India followed by National Anthem of United States of America. A short speech by President Obama recognized India as the a Free Democratic nation and a growing power in Asia. President Obama emphasized a need to have greater cooperation between India and United States which share many common values and many common threats like terrorism.
Mr. Chandu K Patel the president of NFIA with Sachin Amin from NFIA were present. Anju Garg, President of the FIA-SC was also present for the welcome ceremony representing the Southern California Indo-Americans.
A short speech by Dr. Manmohan Singh followed. He stated that he was honored to be in United States on the first State visit and brings the greetings of over one billion Indians. He also echoed the same sentiments as that of President Obama and promised to work together to bring the two world's largest democracies closer in their relationship.
The ceremony was attended by the Indian delegation and American delegation. Vice President Joe Biden with his wife was present for the welcome ceremony. The secretary of state Hillary Clinton was also present at the ceremony. Ratan Tata, Dr. Sanjay Gupta were among the other dignitaries present.
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