PM Modi on 22nd September addressed a crowd of about 50,000 Indian-Americans at the mega ‘Howdy, Modi’ event in Houston, which was also, attended by US President Donald Trump.
‘Howdy, Modi! Shared Dreams, Bright Futures’, the Indian community event in the US, was held at the NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas on September 22. “Howdy”, short for ‘How do you do?’, is a friendly greeting commonly used in the southwestern United States. The event was organised by a non-profit Texas India Forum (TIF), a representative body of Indian-American organisations in Texas and other parts of the United States.
The live audience was the largest ever for an Indian Prime Minister in North America and also the largest for a foreign leader in the US other than Pope Francis. This will also be the first time that an American President addresses thousands of Indian-Americans at one place in the US. For Trump, the event holds significance to come back in power next year and a way of luring Indian Americans who are more disapproving of Trump’s presidency than the average Asian American.
White House on US President Trump’s participation issued a statement saying “It was a great opportunity to emphasise the strong ties between the people of the US and India, to reaffirm the strategic partnership between the world’s oldest and largest democracies, and to discuss ways to deepen their energy and trade relationship.” Houston has a very vibrant Indian diaspora and it’s a big energy capital.
The two sides also hope to announce a potential deal on longstanding trade issues, including the GSP trade programme. The Trump administration terminated India’s designation as a beneficiary developing nation under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) in June.
India’s Ambassador to the US Harsh Vardhan Shringla has called Trump’s participation in the “Howdy, Modi!” event “historic” and “unprecedented”.
After this event Modi will travel to New York to attend and address the United Nations General Assembly on September 27. PM Modi will also be attendind a special Climate Action Summit on Monday along the sidelines of the UNGA.