033.1100 NI/12–453: Telegram
The Ambassador in India (Allen) to the Department of State1
873. Visit of Vice President Nixon to India2 has been well-timed and has contributed notably to our prestige in India and to better understanding of our respective points of view Indians have consistently favored high-level discussions among great powers and have quietly yearned to be included. Mr. Nixon’s presence here and heavy schedule he has followed have fitted in admirably with Indian desire to be consulted on world and particularly oriental problems.
Fact that his visit coincided with reports of US military aid to Pakistan3 and renewed blasts by President Rhee against Indian troops have not made his contacts with Indians easier but timing has nevertheless served to emphasize that we desire to hear Indian views on these subjects and that we are not acting from malice.
Public reception of Vice President in Bangalore was unprecedented for any foreign visitor in recent memory, with most of city’s populace lining streets and cheering on way from airport. Vice President and [Page 1731]Mrs. Nixon stopped at crowded intersection, shook hundreds of outstretched hands, and Vice President made short speech from auto. His reference to President Eisenhower brought enthusiastic cheers from crowd. Reception at Delhi airport by Indian school children, foreign diplomats and others was also warm and friendly. Welcome by villagers on his tour to Sonepat community project yesterday astonished old-time press correspondents.
In after dinner speech at Bangalore on day of arrival, he set tone of his remarks in India, which was that US had no desire to interfere in internal affairs of any country, including USSR and China, and that our only concern was to assure peace and independence of nations faced with threat of aggression. This has served to reassure Indians who have felt US could think only in terms of military solution to world problems.
Vice President’s private talks with Indian leaders such as Rajagopalachari, Hanumanthaiya, Radhakrishnan and Nehru have all been frank yet cordial. India and US points of differences remain, but I do not believe we could hope for any more beneficial results to be obtained from single visit.
- This telegram was repeated to Karachi as telegram 101.↩
- Vice President Richard M. Nixon was in India Nov. 29–Dec. 4, 1953, as part of his goodwill trip to the Far East and South Asia. Extensive documentation regarding this trip is in Department of State file 033.1100 NI.↩
- For documentation regarding the granting of United States military aid to Pakistan, see pp. 1818 ff. and volume IX.↩