Donald Trump, the U.S. President, turned down Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s invitation to India’s Republic Day celebrations of 2019.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi sent an invitation to Donald Trump to be a part of the celebrations as the chief guest, earlier this year.
The decision to turn down the invitation was taken due to Trump’s pre planned engagements. The White House spokesperson, on behalf of Mr. Trump, said, “President Trump was honoured by Prime Minister Modi’s invitation for him to be (the) Chief Guest of India’s Republic Day on January 26, 2019, but is unable to participate due to scheduling constraints.”
The scheduling constraints are said to refer to Donald Trump’s State of the Union (SOTU) address, which is clashing with the date of the Republic Day celebrations. Every year, the SOTU address is scheduled between the 22nd of January and the first week of February.
In 2015, Barack Obama, the then U.S. President, rescheduled his SOTU address and visited India for the Republic Day celebrations as the chief guest.
Since Donald Trump will not be visiting India for the Republic Day celebrations, India has to find another nation head to be the chief guest. The refusal created a setback for India as it is likely that no key world leader will accept the invitation after its declination by the U.S. President.
According to sources, India has shortlisted two or three names to be the chief guest of the Republic Day event and will soon make an official announcement regarding the same.