The Barack-Modi Camaraderie that Worked Wonders
NEW DELHI: They called each other ‘Barack’ and “Modi”, bonded over “chai pe charcha” and talked about how they could not get enough sleep. Prime Minister Narendra Modi may be older than US President Barack Obama by 10 years, but he is still in the process of learning and indicated he was a quick learner and stressed on the need for ‘chemistry’ among global leaders.
“Well, I’d just like to say that I’m fairly new to this. But with the little experience that I have gained over this short period of time, I can say that relations between countries depend less on full stops and commas, and more between the relationship between leaders, the openness, how much they know each other and the chemistry between them. This matters more and is very important,” Modi told reporters.
He was answering a question on why he went into a ‘huddle’ with Obama as part of talks.
Of course, Modi admitted that he could not talk about the content of those talks.
“Parda hai parde rehne do. (Let’s keep them behind curtains),” the Prime Minister said, answering the question in Hindi.
Modi then described how ‘far from the camera’, both had become ‘closer to each other’.
“Barack and I have forged a friendship. There is openness when we talk, and we even joke and share a lot together. I think this is a chemistry which has not only brought Washington and Delhi, Barack and I closer, but also the two peoples of the two countries closer. Personal chemistry between leaders is very important, and this can only grow,” he added.
Obama added that their recent ‘personal friendship’ is a reflection of the ‘warmth and affection between the Indian people and the American people’.