Trump, Melania Try Their Hand at a Charkha in Sabarmati Ashram

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, along with US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump arrived at Sabarmati Ashram on Monday, 24 February, to pay tribute to Mahatma Gandhi, where Trump sat down to try his hand at a charkha, the iconic spinning wheel used as by Mahatma Gandhi to spin khadi.

In the visitors’ book at the ashram, Trump wrote, “To my great friend Prime Minister Modi – Thank you for this wonderful visit!”

A marble replica of Mahatma Gandhi’s ‘three wise monkeys’ statue, a copy of his talisman, as well as a special edition of his autobiography, were among the items gifted to US President Donald Trump and his wife, Melania.

The iconic statue of ‘three wise monkeys’ represents the message, ‘see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil.’

The sculpture was a replica of the statue that was gifted to Gandhi by a Japanese monk way back in 1933, a trustee of the Sabarmati Ashram said.

Click here for all the live updates of Trump’s visit.

US President Donald Trump, with first lady Melania Trump, and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, tour Gandhi Ashram in Ahmedabad.

A trustee of the Sabarmati Ashram, Kartikeya Sarabhai, said the engraved talisman gifted to the Trumps, which Gandhi wrote in August 1947, guides people in public life to make a decision while recalling the face of the poorest of the poor, PTI reported.

The message of the talisman reads, "Whenever you are in doubt, or when the self becomes too much, recall the face of the poorest and the weakest man/woman whom you may have seen, and ask yourself, if the step you contemplate is going to be of any use to him/her. Will it lead to swaraj for the hungry and spiritually starving millions? Then your self will melt away."

A special edition of Gandhi’s autobiography, ‘The Story of My Experiments with Truth’, was also gifted to Trump.

Besides the talisman and Gandhi's autobiography, the Sabarmati Ashram Preservation and Memorial Trust gifted Trump and Melania three hand-spun khesh (a form of fabric), made of khadi that is inspired by a sari of Gandhi's wife Kasturba Gandhi, a booklet containing 150 quotes of the Mahatma, printed on khadi paper, an official of the trust said.

“The US president was happy to visit the Ashram. While leaving he said that it was a very peaceful experience and appreciated the simple living style of Gandhiji,” Sarabhai said.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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