New York, Sept.25 : An unusual guest who came to meet Indian Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, in New York, left him blushing.
A sense of unease was written large on the Prime Minister's face when Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin came calling upon him.
Wearing a shimmery tight hipster and stylish glasses which has become the most discussed topic in the American press, Palin's first meeting with Dr. Singh was completely open for the press, and went off smoothly.
Palin is popularly known as the hockey mom with lipstick, and has prevented the media from attending her previous meetings with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai and Colombian President Alvaro Uribe Velez.
Joy Mandal, a photo-journalist who has been covering political events in this part of the world for the past 25 years, said:Dr.Singh is such a quite person,one cannot picture that Mr. Singh would be possibly spending time with a fashion model, but he managed his meeting with the Governor of Alaska very eloquently. Mr.Singh has a reason to meet her today, as she is the Governor of Alaska. Tomorrow, she could be the vice president. Sarah Palin represents grassroot conservative values. She has completely turned around the November presidential elections."
K.P. Nayar, the Chief Diplomatic Editor of the Telegraph, who is based in Washington D C for more than two decades, said: "It is in our own interest, it is Important to cultivate her, this is the time to cultivate her because until last year, she didn't have a passport. Last year, was the first time she acquired the passport. Yesterday, for the first time, she met the head of a government or the head of a state. So, she would be grateful that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh gave her some advice, treated her with respect, because the rest of the United States, and much of the world, is treating her with contempt -- that she is the greenhorn, the kind of person who should be a heartbeat away from the US presidency. We should cultivateeople who matter in the U.S. politics. We should not make a value judgment."
The Indian Prime Minister knows the indispensable importance of Palin in U.S. politics and it is this acknowledgment which compelled Singh to shelve his shyness and he tried his best to open up to Palin, though the mental compatibility was absent.
Mandal, who took photographs of the meeting, said that the Indian Prime Minister was speechless when Palin chatted withim.
Describing the sequence of events, Mandal said: "Frankly I could not see that Prime Minister Singh was uncomfortable, but I could hear Sarah Palin talking; I could see Dr.Singh's lips moving, but I could not hear his talking."
Some other journalists present at the meeting, said that Palin was equally uncomfortable.
A journalist said: "Our people seems to focus on Manmohan Singh's level of discomfort, but look at her level of discomfort. She is an ordinary moose hunter, no experience either in politics or International relations. She should have been more uncomfortable meeting Manmohan Singh, a first rate world economist, Prime Minister of the world's largest democracy. There is a level of match on the level of discomfort on both sides, auguring for her good relationship if she becomes the vice president."
PMO officials refused to divulge anything about what transpired between the two at the meeting, but off the record, they said it is too early to make a judgment about Palin.
One official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told ANI "She will learn, she is the beginner, she has turned upside down the prospects for the Republican candidate, she is a factor in U.S. politics, whether one likes or not."
Ofcourse, who can forget when George W Bush became the president in 2000 that he hardly had any international experience.He couldn't remember the name of Musharraf who was then the president of Pakistan. So there is hope that Palin will also climb up the political ladder. By Naveen Kapoor