With US electing Donald Trump as its new president, curiosity among its international friends is only growing. Seeking to assuage nerves in New Delhi, US envoy Richard Verma reiterated that convergence of views was the “new normal” in Indo-US ties which is “based on results” and not on “rhetoric”.
The next administration in Washington will consider strengthening ties with India as one of its top priorities, Verma stressed.
“Even on issues that have divided us on recent years, climate change for example…there is convergence. Who would have thought that the US and India would lead the world to a global climate agreement? This is the new normal – strategic, political and economic convergence,” he said.
Recently, speaking at Jamia Millia University, he had reached out to Muslims, denouncing the “unacceptable rhetoric” against the community during the election campaigns in the US.
He listed four reasons as to why further building and strengthening of the US-India relationship will be one of the top priorities of Trump administration, including “a strong bipartisan consensus” in Washington in this regard.
“At a time of deep political polarisation in our country, enhancing the US-India partnership is something that is refreshingly unifying across the political divide. We have greater convergence on the big issues of the day. We have made it clear that we support India’s rise as a global power,” the envoy said.
On Friday, while speaking at the event, organised by trade chamber FICCI, Verma said the number of Indian students studying in the US, which is at its highest now, has seen a substantial jump and the new figures will be announced next week.
Verma said nearly 1.1 million visas were issued for Indian visitors to the US last year which is “three times greater” than it was 10 years ago.
Ambassador Arun Singh, who was until recently India’s envoy to US too was present on the occasion. He said India will have to continue pushing the argument that Indian skilled workforce is contributing to the US economy to counter Trump’s anti-immigrants stance.
(With inputs from the PTI)