From Bhangra to rolling chapatis, Canadian PM’s trip to India is more about photo ops
GN Bureau | February 23, 2018
The Canadian PM has received an official reception by the prime minister of India Narendra Modi on Friday at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. The two are expected to talk some serious business at the bilateral meeting, and are expected to focus on trade, defence, civil nuclear cooperation, space, tackling climate change energy and education. So far the Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau’s trip to India has been more play than work. Or so it seems.
The Trudeaus landed in India on February 17 with their hands folded in a ‘namaste’. And the great Bollywood-like spectacle thus began.
Apart from delivering a lecture to the Indian Institute of Management students in Ahmedabad and addressing a business summit in Delhi, the Canadian PM has been in news for other reasons.
From visiting Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad to Taj Mahal in Agra and Jama Masjid in New Delhi, the Trudeaus have checked in all the major places dressed in traditional attire, which might seem as "too Indian even for an Indian”. Twitterati have even gone to the extent suggesting the Trudeaus as the new brand ambassadors of the traditional wedding clothing brand Manyavar.
Apart from trying their hands at batting in a game of cricket at the New Delhi’s Modern High School's grounds, Mr and Mrs Trudeau even rolled some chapattis for the langar at the Golden Temple in Amritsar.
A brief meeting with the Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh also took place where the "Khalistan issue" was discussed and Trudeau assured Singh of the Canada’s stand against any separatist movement in India or elsewhere.
Trudeau has even met Bollywood celebrities like Shah Rukh Khan and Aamir Khan in Mumbai.
Video of Trudeau breaking into a sudden bhangra jig at the Canada House in Delhi are doing the rounds of social media.
The foreign media, however, has criticised India of snubbing the Canadian PM. They say that PM Modi snubbed his Canadian counterpart by failing to receive him when he arrived in India.
Also, an incident has caused embarrassment to the Canadian PM. A Canada-based Khalistani activist Jaspal Atwal was invited to two events organised for Trudeau, in Mumbai and Delhi. The invitation was hurriedly cancelled as a face saver.
As we wait for what more unfolds in the Trudeau trip, the Washington Post has said, “For Trudeau, this trip is all about the Sikh vote in Canada.”
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