Indian PM Modi meeting queen on 2nd day of UK visit
LONDON: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Queen Elizabeth II on the second day of his high-profile official visit to Britain, as royal officials announced Prince William and his wife Kate will visit India next year.
Modi arrived at Buckingham Palace Friday in a Jaguar — the iconic British car brand owned by India's Tata Motors. He was having lunch with the queen before getting a tour of the palace collection of art and artifacts.
Later Friday, Modi will rally thousands of supporters at Wembley Stadium, home to rock concerts and England's national soccer team.
Britain and India have announced major business deals and cultural exchanges during Modi's trip, including an Indian tour for historic British texts such as the Magna Carta and the opening of a Madame Tussauds wax museum in New Delhi.
And on Friday William and Kate's Kensington Palace office said the royal couple would make their first trip to India in spring 2016.
Modi is being treated to full British pomp and ceremony on the three-day visit. On Thursday he was welcomed by ranks of Scots Guards, saw a ceremonial fly-past by the Royal Air Force Red Arrows aerobatic team and gave a speech to Parliament before spending the night at Prime Minister David Cameron's country retreat Chequers.
Cameron said Modi's visit cemented a "modern, dynamic partnership" between the world's fifth-largest economy — Britain — and India, which will soon rank third.
The two countries have announced 9 billion pounds ($14 billion) in business deals, including a 2 billion pound British investment in solar power in India and more than 1 billion pounds' worth of London-issued bonds to fund the expansion of India's rail network and other projects.
Modi, a Hindu nationalist, has also been met by protests from Sikhs, Muslims, human rights groups and others who accuse him of failing to stop growing religious intolerance and violence in India.