The mega-event organised in Houston in honour of Prime Minister Modi which also featured President Donald Trump established the fact that both India and United States share a strategic relationship. Howdy Modi was a platform for the leaders of both the democratic countries to interact with the Indian American community.
“The joint appearance also underscores the growing strategic significance of US-India ties. The world’s two largest democracies are a vital check on China’s ambitions to dominate the Asia-Pacific region, as Trump recognises and Barack Obama did as well,” The Wall Street Journal said in an op-ed, hours after the two leaders’ historic address at the energy capital of the world.
Describing it as a “spectacle in Houston”, The Wall Street Journal said Trump is hoping to pick up a larger share of this growing voters bloc in 2020 than he did in 2016. Trump understands the benefit of associating with Indian Americans, whose contributions are crucial to the prosperity of both nations in the 21st century, it added.
The New York Times said the rally brought together two leaders with similar styles. “Both rose to power by embracing right-wing populism, portraying themselves as champions of the masses fighting against an entrenched establishment,” it said.
Both presented voters with a vision to make their respective countries “great again”, and both have fanned tensions along religious, economic and social fault lines, it reported. At the same time, The New York Times said earning votes from Indian Americans will not be easy for Donald Trump, even with PM Modi by his side.
Indian Americans overwhelmingly vote for the Democratic party candidates, it noted.
The Washington Post described the event as the leaders of the world’s two largest democracies took the stage together in Houston before a roaring crowd of tens of thousands of Indian Americans, where PM Modi delivered an unmistakable endorsement of Trump’s presidency and cast their joint appearance in historic terms.
“The foreign strategy of soothing tensions with the United States by stroking President Trump’s ego was put into vivid effect here Sunday when Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi lathered praise on his American counterpart at a massive rally celebrating the Indian diaspora,” it said.
PM Modi also spoke on abrogation of Article 370 and how the “move has troubled people who support terrorism.” PM Modi seized the opportunity to justify the Kashmir move which has faced criticism by the international media. He said the move will bring development and other benefits to the region of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. Prime Minister also asked the audience to give a standing ovation to the Indian parliamentarians.
PM Modi ended his almost 50 minute long speech by inviting his US counterpart to India and with a commitment to build their countries.