"I do think there is a renewed sense of optimism and excitement about the US-Indian relationship. I feel not only with US businesses but I feel it as I travel around India as well. I think we are in a very strong position," Verma said on Modi's nearly year-old government in an interview.

Verma noted that the US and India "benefited" from the two high-level meetings between Modi and US President Barack Obama held within five-month period that, he said, was "unusual".

"Last September, the PM (Modi) had a bit of ground-breaking visit to Washington, was able to unstick some issues that had frankly stalled the relationship and then the President (Obama) came (to India) in January," he said.

The two summits, he added, led to a handshake, an agreement between the governments to chart a "very aggressive" path forward, while defence, clean energy, economics and trade also stirred up "a lot of exciting pathways" for the US and India.

Asked about the civil nuclear deal between India and the US, Verma said the two governments had "significantly" moved forward since January, leaving it for the private companies to sit with the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd to push the momentum forward sans official intervention.

He however, added that a timeline could not be fixed for such a "complex" issue. "We would like to continue seeing progress, we have seen progress and this is one of the top priorities because... this is about helping provide non-carbon based source of power to 300 million people that can provide access to electricity," he said.

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