Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attempt to put recent domestic troubles behind him and rejuvenate his political capital when he touches down in the U.K. on Thursday for his first visit as leader of the South Asian nation.
Modi’s packed itinerary for the three-day trip includes talks with U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, a speech to the British parliament and lunch with the Queen, he said in a Facebook post.
Still smarting from a comprehensive defeat in the Bihar state elections last week — a blow to his widespread reform agenda and perception both within and outside the country — Modi will also address around 60,000 Indian expats at London’s famous Wembley Stadium.
The former Gujarat state chief minister also hopes to attract more British investment, with deals between the two countries worth up to $18 billion expected to be announced.
However, the controversy over a perceived spike in Hindu extremism and intolerance of minorities seem likely to dog Modi overseas — a group of activists recently projected his image on the British parliament building with the words “Modi Not Welcome,” and also they also plan to organize protests at the stadium and the British Prime Minister’s residence at 10 Downing Street during Modi’s visit.
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