US, India have the “most important bilateral relationship on the planet,” according to a senior White House official following Modi’s state visit.

The country’s National Security Council’s coordinator for Indo-Pacific issues, Kurt Campbell, called the relationship between the US and India “the most important.” He also said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “historic visit” to the US took the relationship to the next level.

In an interview to news agency ANI, Cambell said: “I think, we together, successfully took this critical bilateral relationship to the next level. For me, it’s the most important bilateral relationship on the planet and it has clearly ascended to the top layer…”

Campbell said it is no more a secret that “India is one of the most sought after players on the global stage”. “You see a number of countries seeking to build deeper, more consequential relationships in trade and technology and people-to-people with India. And I’m just happy to say that the United States has taken its own step to develop much further the relationship between the two sides,” he stated in the interview with ANI.

Campbell added that both the countries leave with a long list of to-do list but “a much better sense of confidence on what to do.”

Responding to a question regarding the comments on democracy and human rights in India, Campbell said, “PM Modi is one of the most effective, successful, popular democratically elected leaders on the planet. This far into his tenure he is extremely popular in India. In the real sense he has the agenda of bringing India into the 21st century. Every society, including the US and India has challenges and its problems. Each of our countries is imperfect and I don’t think the US can or should be in a position where it lectures any other country.”

On the fear among Indian diplomatic community in the US

Campbell condemned the Khalistani attack on the Indian Consulate in San Francisco and stated that US authorities have been in constant contact with Indian and local authorities. “These are extremely lamentable occurrences. We seriously consider the safety and security of diplomats residing in the United States. We are attempting to take the necessary measures to ensure that the Indian diplomatic community feels safe and secure here and continues their work, he told ANI.

About internal discussions between Biden and Modi, Campbell stated that President Biden attempted to imply that for India to realise its full potential, it would need to serve as an example on several fronts. “I believe the message was conveyed with respect and received as such. I have found the level of trust and confidence between Modi and Biden to be quite inspiring; this is something that is essential and will continue to be developed,” he said.

On Russia-Ukraine war

Regarding India’s “nuanced position” on Russia, the Deputy Assistant to the US President and Coordinator for Indo-Pacific Affairs stated, “There are numerous indications that India is adopting principled stands. PM Modi has articulately addressed the devastation and tragedy of the Ukrainian people. I believe that my Indian friends and colleagues are very concerned about the Ukraine war and that Russia has dreadfully conducted this conflict on multiple levels…”

Campbell noted that there is also an acknowledgement that a form of loyalty influences India’s perspective on Russia. He added that the United States has collaborated actively with India to diversify its nuclear equipment supply.

On strategic ties with China

“Yes, the China dimension is essential to both of our countries, but it is insufficient to get us where we want to go with this relationship. Numerous other factors have propelled us forward. In response to a query about the connections between India, China, and the United States, Campbell told ANI that most of these were on display during Prime Minister Modi’s visit.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s three-day state visit to the United States, his first in nine years, included at least three encounters with Vice President Joe Biden, an address to members of Congress, and interactions with some of Silicon Valley’s top CEOs.

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