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SOURCE: NDTV

Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to US President-elect Joe Biden on Tuesday to congratulate him on his win and reiterate India’s firm commitment to its strategic partnership with the United States. The Prime Minister also offered his congratulations to Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, and said that her success was a matter of pride for the Indian-American community.

“Spoke to US President-elect Joe Biden on phone to congratulate him. We reiterated our firm commitment to the Indo-US strategic partnership and discussed our shared priorities and concerns – the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, and cooperation in the Indo-Pacific Region,” the Prime Minister tweeted at around midnight on Tuesday.

“I also conveyed warm congratulations for Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. Her success is a matter of great pride and inspiration for members of the vibrant Indian-American community, who are a tremendous source of strength for Indo-US relations,” PM Modi added.

I also conveyed warm congratulations for VP-elect @KamalaHarris. Her success is a matter of great pride and inspiration for members of the vibrant Indian-American community, who are a tremendous source of strength for Indo-US relations.

— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) November 17, 2020
Earlier on Tuesday, Foreign Minister S Jaishankar talked up positive ties with the incoming Biden administration, noting that the Democrat is “not a stranger” to India.

Apart from working together to combat terrorism and climate change, and defeat the Covid pandemic, Mr Biden is expected to support India’s claim to a permanent UN Security Council seat.

According to a policy paper released during the election, the President-elect feels “no common global challenge can be solved without India and the US working as responsible partners”.

Mr Biden rose to India’s defence in October, before the election began, after Donald Trump referred to “filthy air” in India as he defended his decision to pull out of the Paris accord.

“It’s not how you talk about friends – and it’s not how you solve global challenges like climate change,” he tweeted. He later said that his government would focus on working with India to reduce carbon emissions and secure clean and renewable sources of energy.

Joseph Biden, 77, defeated Donald Trump, 74, in a bitterly-fought presidential election that attracted a record number of Americans voters. Mr Biden gathered 306 electoral college votes (he needed 270 to win) to Mr Trump’s 232 and polled nearly 79 lakh votes to Mr Trump’s 73.2 lakh.

Mr Trump has since lashed out on social media with unsubstantiated allegations of election fraud and miscounting. Several of his tweets have since been flagged by Twitter as being “disputed”.

Hours after Mr Biden’s win was called by US media networks, Prime Minister Modi joined other world leaders, including the Prime Ministers of Canada and the United Kingdom, as well as French President Emmanuel Macron, in tweeting his congratulations.

He also congratulated Ms Harris, calling her success as “pathbreaking”. “I am confident that vibrant India-US ties will get even stronger with your support and leadership,” he said.

Mr Biden is expected to be sworn in as the 46th President of the United States on January 20.