Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Obama's first state dinner with Dr.Manmohan singh

After an expected hour-long conversation, both President Obama and the prime minister will hold a joint news conference in the East Room of the White House, after which Dr Singh and his delegation will leave for the State Department for a luncheon co-hosted by Vice-President Joseph Biden and Secretary Clinton.The same evening will be the gala State dinner which has been moved from the East Room -- which can accommodate a maximum of about 140 guests to the South Lawn (under a massive tent reminiscent of when President Bill Clinton hosted a state dinner for then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in the fall of September 2000 which had a record 700-plus guests) -- because of the clamour of the elite in Washington society, US lawmakers, and the high and mighty in the Indian-American community, particularly the high-rollers in the Obama campaign, not to mention Hollywood and Bollywood stars to attend this first State dinner hosted by the President and the First Lady.At last estimate, the guest list was said to include over 400 and all of those who had been invited had been virtually ordered to be tight-lipped. One White House official told that Aishwarya Rai and husband Abhishek Bachchan "are definitely coming," as are "the Ambanis."

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