Mumbai: A Makrana marble vase worth Rs 7 lakh, a silk rug worth Rs 5.44 lakh, a bracelet of Rs 2.2 lakh and cufflinks costing Rs 1.5 lakh — these are some of the articles gifted to the Trump family by Indian leaders while Donald Trump was US president, a report by the US House of Representatives’ Committee on Oversight and Accountability has revealed.
Titled ‘Saudi Swords, Indian Jewelry, and a Larger-than-Life Salvadoran Portrait of Donald Trump: The Trump Administration’s Failure to Disclose Major Foreign Gifts’, the report was released Friday.
It states that the Trump White House failed to declare more than 100 foreign gifts given to the former president and First Family worth more than $250,000 (Rs 2 crore).
According to the report, the unreported articles include gifts from PM Narendra Modi, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and other foreign government officials.
From India, the Trump family received 17 gifts collectively costing $47,000 (over Rs 38.8 lakh) between 2018 and 2021. The 45th president of the US, Trump was in office from 2017 till 2021.
Of the 17 gifts, which were unreported, 11 were presented to Trump while the rest were presented to former First Lady Melania Trump, the former president’s daughter Ivanka Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner.
While Modi presented a black marble table ($1400) and cufflinks ($1920) to Trump, he gave a bracelet ($2760) to Melania and another bracelet worth $2450 to Ivanka. He also presented Ivanka with a silk painting worth $2200.
The remaining gifts were presented by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath (Makrana vase to Trump), then Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani, then president Ram Nath Kovind, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, Telangana CM K Chandrashekar Rao and the Embassy of India in the Philippines.
The least expensive gift was a scarf presented to Trump by Vijay Rupani which cost $650 (Rs 53,000), while a $4,600-worth model of the Taj Mahal was presented by Kovind.
According to the Foreign Gifts and Decorations Act in the US, it is prohibited for the president and federal officials to claim gifts received from foreign governments worth more than “minimal value” — an amount currently set at $415 (Rs 34,254).
Gifts over this amount can only be accepted on behalf of, and become the property of the US, the Act states.
“The law requires that all foreign gifts over the minimal value be publicly disclosed, regardless of their final disposition. The White House is responsible for compiling and submitting to the State Department a list of gifts given to the President, the Vice-President, and their families by foreign governments,” said the report released Friday.
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Gifts from China & Saudi Arabia
The oversight committee reported 16 unaccounted-for gifts to the Trump family worth $45,000 from Saudi Arabia and five gifts worth $3400 from China.
The most expensive gift to Trump from Saudi Arabia was a dagger worth $24,000 (Rs 19.8 lakh), presented by the Crown Prince.
The report states that the committee is seeking additional records regarding the gifts and their potential impact on US policy.
“The committee’s investigation will assist the committee in assessing whether legislative reforms are needed to ensure records of foreign gifts to the President are preserved and made available to the public, and to prevent violations of the Emoluments Clause,” it said.
(Edited by Nida Fatima Siddiqui)
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