India seeks to fathom Trump policies before holding summit-level meet

India seeks to fathom Trump policies before holding summit-level meet
India may not be too eager for a summit-level meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and new US President Donald Trump until later this year.

The reason is that New Delhi wants time to study his presidency’s capacity and skills to effect the proposed big ticket changes in Washington’s approach towards the rest of the world in trade, security and strategic matters.

New Delhi’s immediate position is to wait for the new US administration to “settle down”, especially after Trump facing sudden challenges, including his decision to ban travel from seven largely Muslim nations ending up in a huge court tangle.

Also, Trump’s legal woes over visa ban have raised doubts about the new presidency’s capacity and skills to usher big ticket changes in domestic and foreign policy matters, according to informed sources in the Indian establishment.

The visa ban episode has made the Indian officials wonder whether Trump’s team had calibrated plans sufficiently in advance before the US President signed the executive order.

Trump team under study

They are also apprehensive about the calibre of the officials in Trump’s administration to advise him on such decisions.

Ever since Trump won the US elections, many Indian officials have poured over several documents and analyses to understand the man who surprised his opponents and friends alike to enter the White House.

With reputation as a “deal-maker” who has a businessman-like approach to major issues, Trump has thrown several signals to predict his style of functioning, which he believes is best for the US.

New Delhi thinks that a summit meeting between Modi and Trump should take place during the G-20 Summit in Hamburg in July.

By this time, India would have had sufficient time to fathom Trump’s policies. As for the need to effect a proper chemistry between the two leaders, informed sources believe that the Indo-US relationship had grown beyond individuals though personal warmth always added to the pace.

At the same time, the sources said, India did not discount the impact of Trump’s presidency on Pakistan to contain terrorism and China for its plans in the region, including the controversial China Pakistan Industrial Corridor that New Delhi stoutly opposes as it gives Beijing access to Indian waters.
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