Obama: Here Comes The Leader


The President of United States of America, Barack Hussein Obama, will visit India to grace the Republic Day as the chief guest on January 26. He is the first US President to attend the Republic Day function in India. The US is India’s second largest trade partner, after China. The visit will focus on deepening economic and defence ties between the two countries.

Barack Obama‘s India’s itinerary is as follows:

  • Welcome ceremony will take place at Rashtrapati Bhawan. He would pay homage at Mahatma Gandhi memorial at Rajghat. Bilateral discussions will take place at Hyderabad House between the two leaders. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will host lunch for President Obama. A small meeting and dinner will be hosted by the President Pranab Mukherjee;
  • President Obama will attend the Republic Day function on 26 January as the chief guest. He will attend At-home reception of President Pranab Mukherjee. The President of USA and the Prime Minister of India will attend events with the business leaders in the afternoon;
  • Obama will address a small gathering on January 27, in the morning. Most likely, he will visit Agra to see the Taj Mahal with Michelle Obama. Then will depart from New Delhi.

Security arrangements for the leader:

  • According to sources, a seven-layer security ring would encircle the VIP area on Rajpath during the Republic Day parade and the airspace over the area would be monitored by radar;
  • A multi-agency control room will monitor the operations in every area of the national capital, which has been put on the highest alert. American security personnel will also be part of the teams manning the control rooms set up to watch footage of nearly 15,000 CCTVs installed in the capital;
  • One-foot-tall, Belgian Malinois dogs, along with their handlers, are here in the capital ahead of US President’s visit. The squad is an integral part of Obama’s security apparatus, tasked with sanitizing everything in the 100-metre vicinity of the president;
  •  Underground metro and offices around the Rajpath area will be taken over 72 hours in advance at the request of the US security personnel;
  • 1,600 US men to cover Obama on Republic Day.
  • There is a possibility that the chief guest, for the first time, will arrive at the venue separately rather than with the President in his bulletproof limousine. If he does come with the President, he will be possibly the first US president not to travel in his own highly-secured “Beast”.

National capital has been put on high red-alert for several days and nearly 15,000 CCTVs have been installed in the city.  A bench of justices Badar Durrez Ahmed and Sanjeev Sachdeva remarked, “Because of a foreign President you do it, but not for Indian citizens. If we direct you to do it for Indians, you do in months and years, else you do it in weeks!”. A very clever and satirical remark has been made on the Indian government. The statement reveals the lack of political will on the part of government to fulfil the basic demands of the Indians. But on the other hand government has immediately cleaned up the city for the President. If a mere visit of a foreign leader can transform the city so drastically, then I plea our Prime Minister to call such leaders every month to make the city safer, cleaner and better.

But on the other hand, US officials demanded from India, to deploy only US snipers on rooftops all along the Rajpath Boulevard where the Republic Day Parade will take place, but Indian authorities declined this request and asked US officials “not to interfere”. The US officials also requested for a no-fly-zone on the Rajpath which Indian officials also declined as it would have resulted in the cancellation of the parade’s customary fly-past by the Indian Air Force.

India’s Intelligence Bureau (IB) has made security heavier and stronger for the world’s top leader, Barack Obama, to visit India safely and peacefully. Millions of eyes are looking forward to see the success of the Republic Day parade. This visit would not only make India’s relations with the US stronger, but would help India to show-off its military strength and potential to the leading country of the world.

Riya Kakkar

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