Praise or public insult? Trumps tells Modi ‘You have great reporters. Where do you find them?’


US President Donald Trump on Tuesday added a new twist to his press conference after his bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he shifted his attention to the Indian reporters gathered at the venue of the press conference. He told PM Modi that the latter had ‘great reporters.’

Donald Trump

In his sudden praise for the Indian reporters, Trump told Modi, “You have great reporters. I wish I had reporters like them.” His comments evoked laughter not just from PM Modi but also from the Indian reporters, who appeared ignorant about the impact of Trump praising them.

He continued, “You’re (Indian journalists) doing better than anybody I’ve ever heard.” Turning to PM Modi, Trump asked, “Where do you find these reporters? It’s a great thing.”

The question that prompted Trump to shower ‘praises’ for Indian journalists was ‘Is there a roadmap to deal with the radical Islamic terror sir?’

On being asked to comment on Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan’s reported comments that the Pakistani army trained Al-Qaeda, Trump said that he hadn’t heard his comments.

Trump is known for his dislike for upright American journalists asking tough questions to him. Last year in November, he had publicly insulted CNN journalist Jim Acosta a ‘rude’ and ‘terrible person’ as the reporter launched a barrage of uncomfortable questions towards the US President, who accused the journalist and his channel of peddling fake news. The journalist later took to Twitter to inform that the Secret Service had revoked his access to the White House.

Later, a judge had ordered the White House to restore Acosta’s access. 

Many would find Trump’s profound praise for Indian journalists, often known for flying the flag for PM Modi and his party, the BJP, as a public insult.

Trump also addressed PM Modi as the father of India and the ‘American version of Elvis.’ He said, “I remember India before was very torn. There was a lot of dissension, fighting and he brought it all together. Like a father would bring it together. Maybe he is the Father of India…The (Houston) even showed how much I like the country of India and how much I like your prime minister…They love this gentleman to my right. People went crazy, he is like an American version of Elvis.”

“I really believe that Prime Minister Modi and Prime Minister (Imran) Khan will get along when they get to know each other, I think a lot of good things will come from that meeting,” Trump concluded.