‘We are not a bunch of bigots’: Former President Bill Clinton speaks to India’s ruling Congress party
India’s Congress party has appointed former US President Bill Gates as its honorary president, the party said on Thursday, as it sought to reassure voters of the party’s stability and the country’s political stability amid political uncertainty.
The decision to award Gates the honour came after he made his first trip to India, where he gave an emotional speech to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday.
Gates spoke to Modi for more than an hour, praising the Indian people and the progress made in the fight against global poverty, and promising a better life for all of them.
He said India’s democratic development has “reached the highest level” and “shouldered the most significant challenges”.
Gates is a prominent investor in the Indian public sector.
He and his wife, Melinda Gates, founded Microsoft in 1997.
India has one of the world’s highest per capita income levels and its GDP has grown by 7.5% in the last five years, despite a severe slowdown in the global economy and high inflation.
In India, Gates has spoken out against the anti-corruption campaign in the country and criticised the government for allowing a former chief minister, Jairam Ramesh, to be appointed finance minister, a move he said undermined the countrys democracy.
Gores, 72, was widely seen as a possible successor to former US president Bill Clinton, but he has said he wants to focus on global issues, such as climate change and the fight to eradicate polio.
Gatsons appointment came two days after the Congress party made a statement in support of the new Indian prime minister, Narendra Modi, a man who has pledged to fight corruption and tackle the countryside’s corruption problem.
The party has also been campaigning for the re-election of the country`s prime minister after he was toppled by the opposition party.