Manmohan Singh, Ghulam Nabi Azad to skip banquet for Trump
Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will not be attending the Presidential banquet hosted for United States President Donald Trump, sources told ANI on Monday. Along with Singh, the Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad, has also decided against attending the state dinner. Reports stated that Congress leaders are miffed since party interim President Sonia Gandhi has not been invited.
Singh reportedly cited health reasons for declining invite
Sources privy to the matter told PTI that the former PM had initially accepted the invitation to the Presidential banquet. However, Singh later expressed his inability to attend the dinner. Singh has cited health reasons for his absence, India Today reported. Sources close to Azad told News 18 that since Gandhi has not been invited, he too has decided against attending the dinner.
Congress' Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury also declined invite earlier
India Today corroborated that since an invite was not extended to Gandhi, both Singh and Azad declined their invites. Earlier, Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury declined an invite to the dinner since the interim party President was not invited.
President Kovind to host dinner for Trump at Rashtrapati Bhavan
US President Trump, who is on his first official visit to India since taking office in 2016, has been invited to the Rashtrapati Bhavan by President Ram Nath Kovind for a state dinner on Tuesday. The floor leaders of both Houses of the Parliament have been invited to the dinner. Apart from this, Trump has no meeting scheduled with any Opposition leaders.
Trump's two-day visit to India will end tomorrow
Trump is on a two-day visit to India, starting Monday. Trump is accompanied by the First Lady Melania Trump, his daughter Ivanka Trump, son-in-law Jared Kushner, and other top officials of his administration. He visited Ahmedabad and Agra on Monday, and is currently traveling to Delhi. In Delhi, Trump will meet some delegates on Tuesday, attend the state dinner, and depart for the US.