Authorities in India’s Gujarat built wall ahead of Trump’s visit

NEW DELHI, February 23 (INP):  The authorities in India’s Gujarat state have built a wall ahead of President Donald Trump’s visit.

Government officials say the 1,640-feet-long brick barrier in the city of Ahmedabad was constructed “for security reasons” and is “part of a beautification and cleanliness drive,” The Associated Press reported on Tuesday.

But critics allege the four-foot-high wall is meant solely to hide a slum from the view of Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who are set to be driven past the area ahead of Trump’s appearance at the 110,000-capacity Motera Stadium, the world’s largest cricket venue.

“Since they are spending so much money on this wall, why not use that to improve our slum and provide better facilities for us?” asked Keshi Saraniya, one of the 2,000 people who live in the downtrodden area. “Why are they hiding us poor people?” Saraniya continued, according to AP.

Trump, whose pledge to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border was a key part of his 2016 election campaign, will visit India on Monday and Tuesday.

Indian senior government official Bijal Patel told the Associated Press the wall was built ‘for security reasons’ and not to conceal the slum.