Washington, June 7 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid a wreath at the Arlington memorial here, where the bodies of American soldiers who sacrificed their lives for their country have been laid down to rest.
Arlington National Cemetery, as it is officially known, is the final resting place of many of the US’ greatest heroes, including more than 300,000 veterans of every American conflict, from the Revolutionary War to Iraq and Afghanistan, the US National Park Services website states.
“Since its founding in 1866, Arlington National Cemetery has provided a solemn place to reflect upon the sacrifices made by the men and women of the United States Armed Forces in the name of our country,” the website reads.
Modi is the third Indian Prime Minister to visit the Arlington memorial after then prime ministers Jawaharlal Nehru in 1949 and Indira Gandhi in 1966.
Modi arrived in the US on Monday afternoon on the fourth leg of a five-nation tour.
Modi attends event for return of Indian idols
Washington, June 7 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended a function here during which Indian idols lying in the US have been returned to India.
“Restoring India’s cultural heritage: PM @narendramodi attends ceremony for return of idols with US Attorney General,” Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Vikas Swarup tweeted on Tuesday, as Modi attended the event.
“Today, we begin the process of returning more than 200 stolen cultural objects back to India,” US Attorney General Loretta Lynch said, according to a tweet by Swarup.
Modi thanked US President Barack Obama for returning the Indian idols.
“I am grateful to President Obama for returning to us these treasures which join us to our past,” the prime minister said.
“For some, these artefacts may be measured in monetary terms but for us this is beyond that. It’s a part of our culture and heritage,” Modi said.
Modi meets heads of US think tanks
Washington, June 7 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is in the US on the fourth leg of his five-nation tour, met the heads of US think tanks here.
“Probing the minds of those who shape foreign policy. PM @narendramodi at an interaction with think tanks in Washington,” Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Vikas Swarup tweeted on Tuesday along with a picture of the meeting.
Earlier, Modi attended an event in which Indian idols lying in the US have been returned to India.
The PMO tweeted: “After history & culture, it’s current & strategic affairs. Think tanks meet PM, share perspective on various issues.”
US returns ancient artefacts, Modi expresses thanks
Washington, June 7 (IANS) From a bronze Ganesh to a Jain figure of Bahubali, the US has returned more than 200 pieces of rare cultural artefacts to India during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Modi expressed his gratitude for the return of the ancient artefacts during a ceremony on Monday night here.
“We are very grateful for government of the US and the President for returning a part of our culture. This heritage inspires us for the future,” he said.
“Usually it’s the present that brings nations together, but sometimes it’s the heritage that brings two nations closer. Over the past two years, various countries have endeavoured to return India’s stolen cultural heritage,” said Modi who arrived in the US on Monday on the fourth leg of his five-nation tour.
“My gratitude to the US government for the sensitivity shown to India’s heritage. This will evoke great respect among the people of India,” he said, according to External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup’s tweets.
“There treasures are to be enjoyed by the entire world. Technology can help us catch those indulging in illicit trafficking,” he added.
Earlier, Swarup posted along with pictures of the artefacts: “From a bronze Ganesh to a Jain figure of Bahubali, here are pics of some of the returned cultural artefacts.”
During her address at ceremony of Repatriation of Cultural Property, US Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch said: “Today (Monday) we begin the process of returning more than 200 stolen cultural objects back to India.”
Earlier, Modi paid tribute to the US space scientists who lost their lives during their research in space at the Space Shuttle Columbia Memorial and also laid a wreath at Arlington Cemetery (Washington DC), the tomb of US soldiers killed during conflicts.
During his visit to Space Shuttle Columbia Memorial, Modi met NASA astronaut Sunita Williams and the family of Kalpana Chawla, Indo-American astronaut, and invited them to visit India.
He later had an interaction with thinktanks in Washington.
“Probing the minds of those who shape foreign policy. PM @narendramodi at an interaction with thinktanks in Washington,” Swarup tweeted.
Modi arrived in Washington on Monday on a three-day visit, during which he will hold talks with President Barack Obama to review bilateral ties and address a joint session of the US Congress.
This is the Prime Minister’s fourth visit to the US in the last two years.