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27 US lawmakers to visit India next week

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The Aspen Institute, Rep. Bob Goodlatte bring delegations in two groups.

A record number of US lawmakers will visit India next week in two separate groups.

One delegation of 19 members from the House of Representatives will visit New Delhi and Hyderabad from February 20 to 25 to discuss US-India strategic ties under the aegis of Aspen Institute. And the other, a bipartisan group of eight House Judiciary Committee chair Bob Goodlatte, will visit New Delhi and Bangalore from February 20 to 23.

Combined, this would be the largest group of US lawmakers to visit a country simultaneously.

“As a very important milestone and demonstrative of the high degree of interests in India, and the strong bipartisan support for the India-US relationship, based on shared democratic values and converging strategic interests,” the Hindustan Times quoted Indian Ambassador to the US Navtej Sarna as saying. Sarna was speaking at an event in Capitol Hill earlier this week.

“This is actually a good time for a visit because Congress goes into recess after a busy opening session,” an official told the English daily. “We are always keen to have them visit India and see things for themselves,” he added.

It is also significant that the visit comes at a time when the Capitol Hill has a record five Indian American law makers.

Both delegations are expected to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi, ministers and other Indian officials. The schedules for the meetings are being worked out.