The Biden-Harris Impact

The Biden-Harris win in the 2020 US presidential elections was not only celebrated by Americans but by the citizens of India, too. The 46th US President’s prior contributions to the Indo-US relationship, while he was the Vice President, were acknowledged by PM Narendra Modi as well as Indian citizens. The newly elected VP, Kamala Harris, is the first Black and Indian-origin woman Vice President in US history. Her Indian roots are said to have provided the Indian-American voters with a sense of belongingness.

At the end of the day, this is all politics. The impact of the new government on Indian economy is unforeseeable. Would the Biden-Harris government support our nation on various issues, as President Trump did? Would the Indo-US relations see a boom like never before? Would India’s internal and border issues be resolved directly or indirectly with the help of the Biden government? All these and many other questions would be answered in the next four years when the new government comes in power. Until then, we ask Hyderabadis about the impact of US election results on India.      - Anahita and Aakansha

Keerthi Narasimhachar

As per the US constitution, the new President-elect will not assume power until Donald Trump officially steps down in January 2021. Having said that, Trump was popular amongst Americans, and during his tenure, he was friendly to India and our Prime Minister. Of course, he took some harsh decisions during his tenure, only to protect his fellow Americans. The relations between our country and America too had blossomed during his regime.

As far as Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are concerned, we are yet to see what kind of an impact they will have on the economy of our country/stock market, considering they have already started getting involved in our internal affairs (article 370 in J&K). In my opinion, in spite of his idiosyncrasies, Donald Trump was a good leader for America.

Kamini Saraf
Great news for Feminism as Kamala Harris is elected as the first black woman, Indian-American US Vice President. And as she says - ‘she may be the first but not the last’. So this sure brings about a wave of fresh air and change also because she has Indian roots, so it’s a matter of pride and maybe a win-win for India.

Trump Govt policy was always ‘America First’, and they were sort of not so favourable for immigrants and Foreign Nationals. The H1B visa issue and the Muslim travel ban, to name a few. The Biden administration is more likely to follow a more systematic approach instead of impromptu decisions made by the Trump Govt.

Democratic Govt in the US has always favoured strong Foreign relations so it might be a sigh of relief for all the millions of Indian students and workers. Also, the US and the world might see a stronger and more mature response towards fighting and dealing with the Pandemic, which has caused the loss of millions of lives and livelihood all over the world.

Dr. A. Srinivasa Rao

Being a supporter of Joe Biden, I am expecting that the Biden-Harris win would bring along various benefits and opportunities for our country. As pointed out by Joe Biden in his various speeches, the plight of our planet is worsening due to various factors like pollution, deforestation etc. I hope that the issue of climate change would be addressed by the new President on priority basis when he joins the White House and hopefully in a few years, our planet Earth would start recovering itself. Another expectation I have from the Biden-Harris government in favour of India, in particular, is an improvement in trade and defence deals.

Ramesh Logananath

Though I didn’t track the 2020 US Presidential elections as passionately as many, the US is the most influential international player, leadership and policy there, does influence many things, including world trade and security. To that extent, there are expectations of a leader.

Biden is better in these respects. As any country leader should, I am sure Biden-Harris will also keep their nation’s interest first. That said, a balanced, fair and global view helps, which I feel Biden-Harris would have. The new government must address the coronavirus issue immediately; the healthcare system and the economic revival should also be worked upon.

For our country, I feel the appreciation of and connect to the tech industry will surely help. Starting from visa situation to probably easing of trade links around technology, the new government can contribute to our nation’s growth alongside their own.

Suresh Rayudu Chitturi

Normally, since the ‘80s, I have liked the Democratic Party and their candidates. But this time, I was kind of neutral. I wasn’t supporting Donald Trump but also wasn’t so sure that I wanted him out. I believe Biden would be good, but the Democratic Party is moving too left and I can’t support that. For the most part, any administration in the US should be positive towards India. The Trump administration didn’t interfere in our internal issues and didn’t sermonize to us on how we should run our country. This is the only area of possible friction I see, as many in the Democratic Party have become ideologically extreme.

I believe at foreign and defence policy levels we will keep getting closer. Maybe even financially, we might see a closer relationship. As compared to Trump, Biden might be a little more open and not push India to open up for exports from the US, especially in agriculture. India would surely get more access to US military equipment, maybe more investments too.

Dr. G.H.S. Prasad

Although the support and loyalty of politicians aren’t guaranteed based on their campaigns or promises, I was still in support of Joe Biden for the 2020 US Presidential elections. Amongst many issues that need to be addressed by the new President, the one which is of utmost importance is the Coronavirus pandemic. The situation and handling of the pandemic in various countries, especially the USA, has been out of control at some point and could get worse with another wave of the virus.

Our economy is definitely going to be affected by the actions of Biden-Harris government and for it to be wholly positive, we will have to wait and see. However, I hope that they are supportive of our fight against terrorism and that they take necessary actions to fight terrorism.

Aalim Javeri
Chief Operations Officer,
All India Professionals’ Congress

The US elections have demonstrated, yet again democracy is a work in progress, and like progress, it cannot be taken for granted it must constantly be supported. Citizens have enacted their enfranchisement; we see that the in record numbers of votes cast on both sides. I am personally proud of President-elect Biden and vice President-elect Kamala Harris, for the distinguished service and most importantly their commitment towards improving the state of the environment. A vote is a very powerful instrument of change. I look forward with optimism to what the future holds.

Girish Malpani
CMD - MPM Group

I am optimistic about Joe Biden. I think he is a very balanced person based on the stands he takes. I believe he will make a positive impact on human rights and climate change issues around the world and India. His Vice-President Kamala Harris, being of Indian origin, speaks volumes about the people of the United States’ idea of India.

Vinay Asar

I don't have any "view" on the US elections but having said that I am glad Trump is no longer the President. However, he has not conceeded defeat as yet so we don't really know how it will play out.

Hamed Saberi
MD Numi Paris

The relationship with the United States of America matters to India more than any other bilateral engagement: economically, strategically and socially. American Presidents can often make a real difference to bilateral ties, including on trade, on immigration policies, and larger strategic issues. Both Trump and Biden have publicly affirmed that they will pursue a foreign policy favourable to India. So there’s no reason to believe that relations between the two countries will be grossly affected based on the White House occupant.

Sunila Eti

As the Biden - Harris duo is all set to take charge the mood for us is very upbeat, not just because Biden has great political acumen but also with Ms Kamala Harris and her Indian lineage, one is hoping the ties between the two largest democracies strengthen across the range of both economic and political areas.

Mallik Thatipalli
Freelance journalist

The Indo-US relationship needs a major reset especially in the light of the recent Democrat victory. Probably, for the first time ever, the Indian government has so unabashedly courted one party, as seen with the Namaste Trump event, earlier this year. With the result favouring Biden and Harris, India will try to court especially the latter, given her Indian roots. But with the duo firmly speaking up against the recent Indian political decisions be it on Kashmir or the CAA-NRC act, it will be a difficult balancing act. 

The way forward is pretty simple. Stick to issue of mutual importance be it terrorism, economy or jobs and find a common point. The Indian government needs to revert to its old policy of maintaining equidistance to both the major American political parties and work towards achieving tangible results. While the Democratic government in all probability will not take the harsh Trump line on China, India will need to reposition itself as an ally to trust in Asia which gives equal importance to democracy and economic growth.

 Nitin Nagpal
Investment Manager

Witnessing the mishandling of major issues by the Trump administration, I decided to support Joe Biden. The victory of the president-elect brings along various expectations like expanding testing reach for COVID-19, reduction in wage-gap, increasing the minimum wage, reinstating US commitment towards climate change, rejoining in Paris climate accord etc. The Biden-Harris government is also expected to be beneficial for Indian businesses such as IT/ITes, as legal immigration processes would get back to normalized levels and renewable energy, given their administration’s focus on clean energy. Their efforts can benefit India by pushing for a permanent seat in UN security council, and also co-operation on terrorism, strengthening ties on issues like climate change and health, and working towards an increase in bilateral trade.

Divya Adepu

I was supporting Joe Biden and the Democrats during the 2020 US Presidential elections. I hope that the Biden-Harris government will be more beneficial for India given their liberal and inclusive approach compared to the controversial Trump administration. One of the issues that I am expecting to be addressed immediately in the USA would be efficient handling of the coronavirus pandemic situation and revival of the economy. The new president-elect also has the onerous task of reversing the course set out by his predecessor and setting the home ground in order.

Joe Biden’s approach towards India has been promising and this was evident during his tenure as VP in the Obama administration. For our nation in particular, I am expecting that the Biden-Harris government would improve bilateral trade between the US and India and would address the immigration and Visa issues. Further, the stand it has taken on the human rights issue in India has been commendable.