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Thousands converge in Washington to attend Trump inauguration

Washington: Thousands of people including many Indian-Americans are converging in Washington to attend US President-elect Donald Trump’s swearing-in ceremony themed ‘Make America Great Again’, the campaign slogan which propelled the real-estate tycoon to victory in the grilling election.

Trump will be sworn-in as the 45th US President on January 20 using two Bibles: the one that former President Abraham Lincoln used at his first inauguration, plus his own that dates back to the President-elect’s childhood.

Trump’s Bible was presented to him by his mother upon his graduation of Sunday Church Primary School at First Presbyterian Church, Jamaica, New York, on Children’s Day on June 12, 1955.

The celebrations around Trump’s inauguration beginning on Thursday has been organised around the theme ‘Make America Great Again’ which not only caught the imagination of the Americans during the grilling election campaign, but also propelled Trump to victory.

An unprecedented security has been put in place to thwart any untoward incident. Outgoing US President Barack Obama on Tuesday reviewed the preparedness.

“We are going to see a just unbelievable tremendous outpouring of support for him,” the incoming White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters during a conference call on Tuesday.

“The president (-elect) has been just overwhelmed by the amount of support and outpouring of people that want to participate in some way with this ‘historic inauguration’,” Spicer said in response to a question.

While Trump supporters in Washington DC have already started a series of events ahead of the Friday inauguration, official events would kick off tomorrow with the wreath-laying ceremony by Trump and the vice president-elect Mike Pence at the Arlington National Cemetery. The historic National Mall would also be the venue of celebrations.

On the footsteps of the Lincoln Memorial, scores of artists from across the country would perform before thousands of supporters of Trump.

Voices of the People will feature groups from the hundreds of applications received by the Presidential Inaugural Committee to take part in inaugural festivities.

Prominent among those participating are King’s Academy Honor Choir, the Republican Hindu Coalition, Pride of Madawaska, Webelos Troop 177, American Tap and Celtic United Pipes and Drums.

‘The Make America Great Again! Welcome Celebration’ will take place following Voices of the People and will be broadcast live to the nation from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

It will feature historic remarks from Trump and special appearances from Toby Keith, Jon Voight, Jennifer Holliday,

The Piano Guys, Lee Greenwood, RaviDrums, 3 Doors Down, and The Frontmen of Country (featuring Tim Rushlow, former lead singer of Little Texas, Larry Stewart of Restless Heart and Richie McDonald of Lonestar).

The celebration will also feature the participation of military bands and a fireworks show by Grucci at the conclusion.

“This celebration will combine a diverse group of performers and is the official kick-off to the inaugural events. The concert will include an appearance by the President-elect Trump,” a media release said.

PTI