Prime Minister Narendra Modi is "doing a terrific job", former United States president Donald Trump has said as he asserted that India "has never had a better friend than me".
Trump made the comments in an interview with NDTV during which he spoke on a wide range of issues such as his relationship with India and Modi, the recent Federal Bureau of Investigation raids at his Mar-a Lago property, the Presidential elections and the Capitol Riots.
"I've had a great relationship with India and Prime Minister Modi. We've been friends. And I think he's a great guy and doing a terrific job. It's not an easy job he's got... We've known each other a long time. Good man," said Trump, who enjoyed a close relationship with Modi during his presidency from 2017 to 2021.
India was "doing just fine with your great Prime Minister Modi, my friend," said the 76-year-old real estate mogul-turned politician who met Modi at least four-time post- 2019 general elections in India.
In his first term, Trump, a Republican, had emerged as the best friend of India at the White House taking the relationship to a new level and his friendship with Prime Minister Modi was well known, which was reflected in the two leaders addressing two joint rallies in the US and India in less than a year.
"I think India has never had a better friend than me. I don't believe that. And that's one of the relationships that, you know, I've formed. But India has never had a better friend as President than me," Trump, who is now eying to contest the presidential election in 2024, boasted.
When asked if his relationship was better than the one forged by former President Barack Obama before him or incumbent Joe Biden after, Trump said, "you'll have to ask Prime Minister Modi, but I don't think you've never had a better relationship than you had with President Trump."
India-US strategic relationship progressed at a much faster pace during the Trump Administration, which backed India after its fighter jets bombed terror training camps in Pakistan's Balakot. India launched the air attack on the terror training camp after the Pulwama terror attack on a CPRF convoy that killed 40 personnel.
Under the Trump Administration, the United States became the second-largest arms supplier to India, growing from virtually no arms sales a decade ago to more than USD 20 billion at the time.
President Trump joined Prime Minister Modi for the historic "Howdy, Modi" event at Houston's NRG Stadium where Trump addressed a huge crowd of 50,000 Indian-Americans in September 2019. Within a year, Trump visited Modi's home state of Gujarat where he received a rousing welcome. Both leaders addressed a massive gathering at the 'Namaste Trump' event at the Motera Stadium in Ahmedabad.
Trump, known for his unpredictable leadership style, divisive rhetoric targeting both allies and opponents, strongly indicated that he might run for the 2024 US presidential election.
"Everyone wants me to run, I'm leading in the polls...I'll make a decision in the very near future, I suspect. And I think that a lot of people are going to be very happy," said Trump, who is inseparable from controversies.