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18 Feb, 2020 08:02

Pampering Melania? New Delhi enlists all-female team with refined etiquette to assist first lady during India visit

Pampering Melania? New Delhi enlists all-female team with refined etiquette to assist first lady during India visit

New Delhi has reportedly assembled an elite squad of women to make First Lady Melania Trump’s upcoming trip to India as comfortable as possible – part of extensive preparations for the US president’s visit next week.

The first lady will be met by a 10-member team when she arrives in India with her husband on February 24, according to an official who spoke with the Financial Express. Headed by a female Indian Police Service (IPS) officer, the all-female group has been given special training, including “how to talk” with Melania, the outlet reported. The elite team has also been instructed in cyber monitoring and other aspects of security. They have also been ordered to wear trousers and blazers instead of their customary khaki uniform.

Melania’s special treatment is part of exhaustive – and expensive – preparations being made by the Indian government ahead of the US president’s visit.

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According to Indian media, more than $63 million will be spent on beautification of roads, cultural events and security during Trump’s three-hour visit to Ahmedabad. The preparations reportedly include the planting of some 100,000 trees and flower beds, as well as the resurfacing of more than a dozen roads.

The first couple’s stop in Ahmedabad will also include a welcome event named ‘Namaste Trump’ at the world’s largest cricket stadium, where tens of thousands are expected to attend.

The state visit will involve a lot more than thousands of flower beds and an elite female squad, however. Washington and New Delhi are at odds over a number of economic and political issues, and have struggled to draft a limited trade agreement. Many are predicting that the US president will not be able to close the deal during his trip.

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