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You Are Causing Me Real Trouble, Biden To PM Modi During Quad Summit


Published on: May 21, 2023 | Updated on: May 21, 2023

PM Modi with US President Joe Biden (ANI)

New Delhi/Hiroshima: US President Joe Biden said in jest during the Quad Summit earlier on Saturday that he should take Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s autograph as he was "too popular". According to news agency reports citing officials, it all started when the US President walked up to Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the Quad meeting and referred to the large number of requests he (President Biden) was getting from prominent citizens to attend PM Modi’s programmes during his state visit to Washington DC in June.

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese too joined the conversation and said he too was finding it difficult to accommodate all the requests he is getting for a community event in Australia, where Modi is scheduled to speak on Tuesday even though the Sydney venue has a capacity of 20,000, officials were cited by these reports as saying.. Albanese then apparently recalled how at the Narendra Modi stadium in Ahmedabad in March this year, more than 90,000 people welcomed him during the victory lap. PM Modi and PM Albanese were in the Gujarat stadium to watch an India-Australia test match then and had taken a lap of honour.

President Biden, presenting a similar problem to Modi, was quoted by various news reports from Hiroshima as having said, "I should take your autograph." The US President continued in jest, "You (PM Modi) are causing me a real problem. Next month we have a dinner for you in Washington. Everyone in the whole country wants to come. I have run out of tickets. You think I am kidding? Ask my team. I am getting phone calls from people I have never heard of before. Everyone from movie stars to relatives. You are too popular."

The US President then told PM Modi, "Mr Prime Minister, you have made a significant impact on everything, including what we are doing in the QUAD. You also made a fundamental shift in climate change. You have influence in the Indo-Pacific. You are making a difference," he added.

As part of his ongoing three-nation visit to Japan, Papua New Guinea and Australia, Modi is scheduled to arrive in Australia on Monday and will address the community event on Tuesday in Sydney. Modi will travel to the US next month on an official State visit during which he will be hosted at a State Dinner on June 22 by US President and First Lady Jill Biden. This will be the first official state visit by Modi that includes a state dinner and it is this that distinguishes it from Modi’s previous official visits to the US in the past nine years. It also comes at a time when India is holding the Presidency of the G20 grouping and will host the G20 Summit in September in the Capital.