A leader of the opposition Congress party has urged India "to take note" over Washington's Twitter unfollowing. The incident has sparked a nationwide debate about a possible end to the Trump-Modi "bromance."
Indian politician and former President of the Indian National Congress Rahul Gandhi tweeted that he is "dismayed" by the unfollowing of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind on Twitter.
Gandhi, who hails from the Nehru-Gandhi family — a prominent line of Indian politicians traditionally revolving around the Congress party — also said he urges the Ministry of External Affairs "to take note" over the incident.
The White House has "unfollowed all Indian handles" including that of Modi's office and the Indian embassy in the US, Indian broadcaster NDTV reported.
The broadcaster said that the White House, under the administration of US President Donald Trump, had started following Modi on April 10, nearly two months after Trump's first state visit to India at the end of February.
According to NDTV, Modi became the only world leader followed by the official Twitter handle of the US Administration, adding that the White House followed some 19 Twitter handles at the time and all non-US accounts were Indian.
The move was seen by some in India as a symbol of the strengthening rapport shared by Trump and Modi.
Trump tries to woo India
Trump's two-day visit to India in February had signified the growing strength of the bilateral relationship between Washington and New Delhi amid China's growing influence in the South Asian region.
The White House has been trying to win over India in the areas of defense and security as part of the Trump administration's Indo-Pacific strategy.
"India will always hold a very special place in our hearts," Trump had said to roaring crowds at the Motera cricket stadium in Ahmedabad city — Modi's home state of Gujarat — during his visit.
Trump at the time had applauded a number of Indian icons, from history to cricket to Bollywood, albeit with struggles to pronounce some of their names.
He also had words of praise for Mr Modi: "Everybody loves him but I will tell you this, he is very tough. You are not just the pride of Gujarat, you are living proof that with hard work, Indians can accomplish anything they want."
Trump concluded his speech by saying: "God bless India, God bless the United States of America - we love you, we love you very much."
End of 'bromance'?
However, the White House Twitter incident has left some Indian politicians feeling skeptical.Among them, Gaurav Pandhi, a member of the Congress party's social media unit, asked in several posts: "Why has White House unfollowed Prime Minister and President of India on Twitter."