Since he became the prime minister of India, Mr. Modi’s seventh visit to the US began on September 23.
After the grand success of the Howdy Modi event, the international media, as well as the international strategic community, will be keenly watching the happenings in Washington DC and New York, where Mr. Modi is scheduled to address the UNGA.
Mr. Modi has a packed and hectic schedule starting from the first day, on September 23, with a range of meetings organized with CEOs and business honchos of the corporate world, a first meeting with the Vice President of USA Kamala Harris, the Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison and the Prime Minister of Japan.
On September 24, Mr. Modi will meet the new President of the USA, Mr. Joe Biden, face-to-face for the first time after Mr. Biden took office in 2021. Before this, they had a virtual meeting during the first online meeting of the QUAD. After that, all the QUAD leaders will have an in-person meeting for the first time, which would be a paradigm shift in the way the QUAD has been functioning till now.
The Modi-Biden agenda will focus on Afghanistan regarding India’s concern on the security implications of the Taliban government and the fact that it could prove to be a safe haven for terrorists of all hues and colors. They would also be discussing the south Asian region and issues of common interest, including how the QUAD shapes up in the light of AUKUS emerging on the geopolitical horizon. There will also be a focus on whether the QUAD will have a military dimension or primarily focus on other broader areas of cooperation like AI, 5G technology, climate change and global warming, trade, and vaccine manufacturing.
There is strong bipartisan support for stronger ties with India. Mr. Modi will attempt to cement it as a strong convergence further is felt with regard to taking on the expansionism and belligerence of China in the Indo-Pacific region. India is expected to shed its reticence and non-aligned attitude vis-à-vis China and adopt a more assertive attitude in light of the Galwan incident and the continued military deadlock in Ladakh.
On September 25, Mr. Modi would be addressing the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly as the first speaker of the day. Mr. Narendra Modi became the first prime minister to chair a united nations security council debate when India was the council’s rotating president. This has not only added a new feather in Modi’s cap but also signals towards the growing significance of India in international geopolitics.
At the UNGA, he will be explaining to the world how India handled the pandemic. He will also be deliberating on the threat to global security from terrorism and how to deal with sanctuaries for terrorists like Pakistan and Afghanistan. One major issue on his agenda vis-à-vis the UN would be reforming the United Nations itself to reflect the reality of contemporary geopolitics and remain relevant and useful to the world instead of behaving like a puppet in the hands of the permanent members of the Security Council.
After the address, Mr. Modi would head back to India, hopefully driving more confidence in India and a renewed vigor in its ties with the United States.