On June 2, 2023, the US Congress invited PM Narendra Modi to address a joint meeting of the House of Representatives and Senate which will be held on June 22, 2023.
The invitation was sent by US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden. Additionally, a state dinner will be held on June 22, 2023.
In a letter sent by the US House Speaker Kevin Mc Carthy, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senate Republican leader Mitch Mc Connell, and House Democratic leader Hakeem Jefferies read- “During your address, you will have the opportunity to share your vision for India’s future and speak about the global challenges our both countries face.”
The letter further read that Modi’s “historic address to a joint Meeting of the Congress seven years before has left a lasting impact and greatly deepened the friendship between the two nations.”
“Once again, we would be honoured to have you join us for a Joint Meeting of Congress to celebrate the enduring friendship between the US and India. We look forward to continuing to work together to build a brighter future for our countries and the world,” the letter read.
The letter quoted PM Modi’s last address: “Our relationship is primed for a momentous future. The constraints of the past are behind us, and the foundations of the future are firmly in place.”
According to the White House Press Secretary, Karine Jean Pierre, PM Modi’s visit “will be an opportunity to reaffirm the deep and close partnership between the US and India and the warm bonds of family and friendship that link Americans and, clearly, Indians together. So that is very important for the US President.”
Continuing, Pierre said- “The President and First Lady are looking forward to welcoming PM Modi for the official state visit, which is going to happen on June 22, 2023.”
The White House Press Secretary further said the visit would also embolden the US-Indian commitment to a free, prosperous, secure and open Indo-Pacific and shared resolve to evaluate the strategic technology partnership, including defence, space and clean energy.
The Senate India Caucus is a bipartisan coalition that promotes relations between the US and India. “Once we get closer to the 22nd, surely we will hold background calls and have more information and details,” Pierre said.
She added: “The leaders will discuss ways to expand further our educational exchanges and people-to-people ties as well as our work together to confront common challenges from climate change to workforce development and health security.”
PM Narendra Modi is the only third leader in history to get an invitation to address the joint meeting of the House Of Representatives and Senate. Other Indian Prime Ministers who received this rare honour were Manmohan Singh (July 19, 2005), Atal Bihari Vajpayee (September 14, 2000), PV Narasimha Rao (May 18, 1994) and Rajiv Gandhi (July 13, 1985)
International figures such as Winston Churchill, the prime minister of Britain during World War II and Nelson Mandela were also invited for this honour.
The House Of Representatives and Senate together form the United States Congress. It is a bicameral legislature. It was established under Article 1 of the Constitution of the United States of America. It enacts laws that influence the daily life of the Americans. Its responsibilities include funding government functions and programmes, holding hearings to inform the legislative process, and overseeing the executive branch.
Although the House and Senate are structured differently and have their own roles and responsibilities, they work in tandem to pass legislation.