In fact, both Obama and his top diplomat – Secretary of State John Kerry – would kick-off their foreign trips of the year with India, which officials said is reflective of the serious efforts made by the administration to not only strengthen India-US relationship but also to send a message to the countries of the region and other major international players too.

Preparations would begin in full swing this week, for Obama's India visit to attend the January 26 Republic Day Parade as chief guest.

His visit would be preceded by Kerry's Ahmedabad visit to  attend the Vibrant Gujarat Summit. Thereafter Kerry is likely to travel to Pakistan for US-Pak Strategic Dialogue.

And sometime in February Obama would host the new Afghan leadership– President Ashraf Ghani and CEO Dr Abdullah Abdullah– at the White House.



A formal announcement of Kerry's trip to India and Pakistan and that of Afghan leadership to the US has not been made yet.But the three high-profile visits reflects the foreign policy priority of the US President as he enters the last two years of his presidency.

Under the US constitution, Obama who was first elected as the US President in 2008 and then re-elected in 2012, can not run for a third term.

Obama himself is looking forward to his second trip to India and before he left for his annual vacation had issued instruction to his officials to work on specific deliverables to realise the true potential of India-US Strategic relationship in the 21st century.

The first non-white American President, Obama has accepted an invitation from Prime Minister Narendra Modi to attend the Republic Day Parade on January 26.

He is the first US President to do so. He is also the first American President to visit India twice. This is because; Obama believes that India – an anchor of peace and stability in entire Asia-Pacific region – has a major role to play in the global political scene in decades to come.

It is the two largest democracies of the world, he believes, need to join hands together -- "Chale Saath Saath" – to resolve some of the pressing problems of the world, be it addressing the issue of climate change or poverty elimination in Africa or developing a joint policy to eliminate the scour of terrorism from Afghanistan now that the US troops have ended their combat role in the country.

And it is in Modi, officials here believe, Obama has found an Indian leader who is willing to walk the talk to realise the common goals of the two countries.

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