UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — India has attempted to dampen US President Donald Trump’s hopes of mobilizing “millions” of people to receive him during his visit to the country next week, as it may be a translation error or a misunderstanding that inspired him to do so.
On his first official visit to India, Trump is expected to arrive in Ahmedabad on Monday before flying with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the largest cricket stadium in the world.
And Tuesday, Trump said Moody “told me there would be seven million people” lining up on the side of the road from the airport, and Thursday during an election rally in Colorado Springs the US president raised the roof and said “between six to ten million people.”
The numbers are important for Trump. The billionaire, known for his bold rhetoric and his chief spokesman, launched a scathing attack on the media on the first day of his presidency, accusing reporters of diminishing attendance at the inauguration ceremony.
Indian officials are already planning a major show along the 22 km stretch of road, which includes 28 stations where artists perform, and designs that embody the life of independence hero Mahatma Gandhi.
But a number of officials, including the foreign minister and a local member of the Modi party, were less optimistic, as they expected the presence of a few thousand to about a hundred thousand at most.
A senior police official in Ahmedabad and a Moody party official told AFP, without giving their names, that only 4,000 to 5,000 people would attend along the road that Trump will take for security reasons.
In the last census, Ahmedabad had a population of 5.6 million, and Gujarat 63 million. There were no reports of large numbers arriving in the city prior to Trump’s visit.
Confusion may be caused by local phrases when describing large numbers in India.
Moody, for example, often talks about India’s 130 crore, or 1.3 billion.
It is possible that Indian officials have told their American counterparts that there will be “five brothers” of people to welcome Trump equivalent to 500 thousand, but in translation this has become in some way five million.
Trump and first lady Melania are expected to fly from Ahmedabad to the Taj Mahal in southern New Delhi on Monday before holding formal talks with Modi in the capital the following day.
This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for OBSERVATORY NEWS from different countries around the world – material edited and published by OBSERVATORY staff in our newsroom.
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