Washington: US President Donald Trump has reportedly used an Indian accent to imitate Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his conversations about US policy in Afghanistan, according to a report in a leading American daily on Tuesday.
Prime Minister Modi, during his visit to the US last year, held talks with President Trump on a number of issues including the situation in war-torn Afghanistan.
Modi told Trump in an Oval Office meeting in June: “Never has a country given so much away for so little in return” as the United States in Afghanistan, The Washington Post quoted sources as saying.
To Trump, Modi’s statement was proof that the rest of the world viewed the United States as being duped and taken advantage of in Afghanistan, the Post said.
“Senior administration officials said that the president has been known to affect an Indian accent and imitate Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” the Post reported.
The White House did not immediately respond to a question on the Post’s assertion that Trump has been imitating Modi in an Indian accent.
Democratic Indian-American Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi condemned Trump’s reported habit of affecting an Indian accent to imitate Modi.
“I was appalled to read that President Trump reportedly affected an Indian accent to imitate Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” he said.
“In the wake of the President’s recent comments disparaging entire regions of the world while we still face such division at home, behaviour that belittles our allies and ‘otherizes’ entire communities of Americans is one of the last things we need.
“Americans are not defined by their accents, but by their commitment to this nation s values and ideals,” Krishnamoorthi said.
Multiple times in the past, the White House has denied such reporting from the Post including his alleged “shithole” remarks during a meeting with lawmakers early this month.
Trump has quite often accused the Post of being a “fake news”.
According to the daily, Trump has made it clear to senior Pentagon officials that he wants to see a quick return on the increased US investment in troops and money in Afghanistan.
Pentagon officials are also under pressure to keep troop numbers from growing significantly, it said, adding that up to 1,000 more US troops could be headed to Afghanistan this spring.