The US President Donald Trump called up Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday evening and congratulated him for leading the BJP to victory in recently concluded Assembly elections, the White House said today. Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters that Trump congratulated Modi and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on their poll victories. The White House said the leaders spoke by phone.
“The president spoke with German Chancellor Merkel and Indian Prime Minister Modi earlier today to congratulate them on their parties’ success in recent elections,” Spicer said.
The elections commenced on February 4 and ended on March 9 after polling was rescheduled in some constituencies.BJP which is presented and coordinated mainly by Modi and his aide Amit Shah, was successfully able to sweep elections in the neighbouring Uttarakhand and bag three-fourth majority.
The BJP rode a Modi super-wave to a colossal victory in Uttar Pradesh earlier this month, winning 312 of the state’s 403 seats. It not only swept neighbouring Uttarakhand but also formed governments in Goa and Manipur. However, it lost Punjab to main rival Congress in the results announced on March 11.
Uttar Pradesh was under the control of regional parties such as the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party from last 15 years.
BJP has returned to power in the politically-pivotal state of UP after a gap of 15 years. In Goa and Manipur, no party had an overall majority. However BJP managed to form the government with support from other regional parties.
The elections in the five states had turned into a virtual referendum on Modi’s popularity following his much-debated decision to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes.
It was for the second time that Donald Trump called up PM Modi since his inauguration as US President on 20th January this year. The leaders of the world’s two biggest democracies last spoke in January when President Trump called up PM Modi and resolved to stand “shoulder-to-shoulder” in the global fight against terrorism and for defence and security.
In a statement issued after Modi-Trump telephonic conversation, the White House said that Trump had “emphasised that the US considers India a true friend and partner in addressing challenges around the world”. Both the leaders invited each other to their respective capitals. President Trump is looking forward to host Prime Minister Modi in the US later this year.
After swearing-in as the US president on 20th January, Prime Minister Modi was the fifth foreign leader with whom Trump had spoken to on phone. He had by then spoken to British Prime Minister Theresa May, Canada’s Justin Trudeau, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.
After Trump surprised the world with his historic victory in the lgeneral elections held on 8th November, Modi was among the first five world leaders to have congratulated Trump. During his gruelling election campaign, India is among the few countries in addition to Israel with whom Trump spoke of strengthening ties if elected to power.