New US envoy resorts to cric diplomacy

New US envoy resorts to cric diplomacy

Kenneth Juster is yet to land in New Delhi to take over as the new US ambassador to India. He is already on the job though.

To strike a chord with the people of India, Juster, 62, chose the sporting passion of the nation - the cricket.

"I think sports are great way to bring friends together and to build bridges between people of different countries and culture. That's just one reason why I cannot wait to play cricket in India. See you soon," he says in an introductory video posted on the website of the US Embassy in New Delhi.

Juster, who was sworn in by US Vice President Mike Pence in Washington on Monday, appears in the video donning a Team India jersey, holding a cricket bat and a ball.

He is likely to arrive in New Delhi later this week - just in time to lead the US Embassy in New Delhi in preparing for the visit of Ivanka Trump, the daughter and advisor to US President Donald Trump, to Hyderabad for the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, 2017.

The new US envoy in New Delhi also narrates in the video his personal sporting experience, which began at a very young age. "My deep interest in India and international affairs is matched only by my love for sports, which began at a young age. I played basketball at the high school and always enjoyed tennis, baseball and golf," says Juster, who has a degree from the Harvard Law School. He also has a masters degree in public policy from the John F Kennedy School of Government of Harvard University.

"I am honoured that President Trump has asked me to serve as the US ambassador to India. The US-India relationship will have a profound impact on the 21st century and I look forward to expanding the strategic partnership," Juster says in the video.

He says he had his first contact with India when he was just 11 years and his parents returned from a trip to the country. "I still have very vivid memories of my father's many photographs of this great country and its remarkable people. I am pleased that I will soon be living in India and will fully experience its extraordinary culture and history," says Juster.

During his tenure as under secretary of commerce in the American government from 2001-2005, Juster served as one of the co-chairs of the US-India High Technology Cooperation Group. He was one of the architects of the next steps in strategic partnership initiative between India and the US. His work helped lay the foundation for the historic civil nuclear agreement between the two countries.

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