Gujarat is all geared up to give United States President Donald J Trump and his wife Melania a grand welcome when they arrive in Ahmedabad aboard Air Force One on Monday, February 24.
Trump and Prime Minister Narendra Damodardas Modi will take part in a roadshow that will begin from Ahmedabad airport and end at the new cricket stadium — the world’s largest stadium — in Motera.
From Ahmedabad, Trump will travel to Agra before arriving in New Delhi for the business end of his visit.
Here’s how Ahmedabad is decked up to welcome Mr and Mrs Trump.
Photographs: PTI Photo; ANI Photo, Reuters
A man gives finishing touches to paintings of US President Donald J Trump and Prime Minister Narendra Damodardas Modi on a wall along a route that the two leaders will take on Monday afternoon.
Large hoardings welcoming Trump and Modi have been put up on the roadshow’s 22 km route. Officials have estimated that over 300,000 people will greet Trump and Modi on the route.
A vehicle which is part of the convoy that will escort Trump during his visit has already arrived in Ahmedabad.
As has a Hummingbird helicopter, ferried to Ahmedabad by a US cargo plane.
After the roadshow, the two leaders will inaugurate the newly built stadium at Motera where 110,000 people are expected to take part in the ‘Namaste Trump’ event.
On their way to the stadium in Motera, Trump and Modi will visit Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram. Trump will be the first US president to visit the ashram, a place closely associated with India’s freedom struggle.
Trump will be gifted a charkha, books on Gandhi’s life and a portrait of the Father of the Nation. Sources said Trump and Melania may try their hands at the charkha, which is kept near Hriday Kunj, a cottage inside the ashram where Gandhi and his wife Kasturba once lived.
Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said Trump and his delegation will be treated to India’s rich and diverse cultural heritage during his visit to Ahmedabad in a manner that has few parallels in the country or elsewhere.
After the Namaste Trump event, POTUS and FLOTUS will fly to Agra where they will spend about an hour at the Taj Mahal before sunset.
According to a news report, Trump’s three-hour visit will cost Gujarat around Rs 85 crore/Rs 850 million. This is equivalent to about 1.5 per cent of the annual budget for the home ministry in Gujarat.