M A I N   N E W S

Special to the tribune
Poll outcome may not impact ties with India
Ashish Kumar Sen in Washington

Mid-term elections that have shifted control of the US House of Representatives from the Democrats to the Republicans are unlikely to have any impact on relationship with India because of bipartisan support for these ties in Congress, according to analysts.

"India isn't a partisan issue," Teresita Schaffer, director of the South Asia programme at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies told The Tribune.

President Barack Obama will arrive in Mumbai on November 6 for the longest overseas visit of his presidency. The trip is also the first first-term visit by a US President to India in over 30 years.

"The visit will produce some good feelings and good press — and probably some actual results as well as some good oratory," Schaffer said. "Beyond the visit, the big problem for the US is going to be gridlock. That will be nasty. Fortunately, the India agenda doesn't depend on new initiatives going through Congress."









Tryst with 2 heroes in Mani Bhavan

Mumbai, November 3
The US President Barack Obama will retrace the footsteps of his "real hero" Mahatma Gandhi when he walks through the Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya, which was the Mumbai home of the apostle of ahimsa between 1917 and 1934 and is now a museum housing rare memorabilia and 50,000 books.

The two-storey building on Laburnum Road, which Obama will visit during his trip to Mumbai on November 6, was also the peaceful abode for the US president's other inspiration, Martin Luther King, and his wife Coretta King for two days in May,1959. “Living at Mani Bhavan for these few days has been like living with Gandhiji. Thank you for providing me with a rich and inspiring experience," Coretta King has written in visitor's book.

It was here that Gandhi initiated the non-cooperation, satyagraha, swadeshi and khilafat movements, the authorities said. All set to welcome Obama, Mani Bhavan will greet the president and his wife Michelle with garlands of khadi and coconut water as is the tradition of the place, an official said here. The Bhavan president Vasant Pradhan will greet Obama while Gandhi's granddaughter Usha Gokani will welcome the first lady.

It has got a fresh coat of paint and the premises have been spruced up, but the authorities said not many changes could be made as it was a heritage site. "With the place converted into a library and museum, there isn't any scope of making physical changes. We would not want to change the spots where Gandhiji spun the 'charkha' or held meetings with fellow freedom fighters," Mani Bhavan executive secretary Meghshyam Ajgaonkar said. — PTI





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