"Welcome to Trump Village": Indian town renamed ahead of Modi's visit to White House

08:30 PM | 23 Jun, 2017
CHANDIGARH, Haryana - A village in northern Indian state of Haryana renamed itself "Trump Village" on Friday in an unusual gesture to US president Donald Trump ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's trip to Washington this year.

A huge billboard declaring "Welcome to Trump Village" in Hindi and English, accompanied with a beaming portrait of the US president, was unveiled in the tiny hamlet officially known as Marora, the TIME reported.

But despite the bold lettering greeting visitors at the arched village gateway, the name change is not official or sanctioned by the government.

The symbolic gesture comes just days before Modi's first meeting with Trump this weekend at the White House.

The leaders of the world's largest democracies exchanged pleasantries in a phone call in January when Trump invited Modi to the White House.

The water and sanitation group Sulabh, which has been installing toilets in the impoverished settlement, suggested the name change to the local council.

Earlier this month, a small Hindu group marked the occasion of Trump's 71st birthday last week by feeding a giant poster of the president slices of cake in the heart of New Delhi.