Sonia, Rahul, Priyanka arrive in Beijing

August 7th, 2008 - 1:25 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Sonia Gandhi

Beijing, Aug 7 (IANS) India’s ruling Congress party president Sonia Gandhi arrived here Thursday along with son Rahul, daughter Priyanka, son-in-law Robert Vadra and their two children to attend the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games along with a galaxy of world leaders, including US President George W. Bush. Sonia Gandhi, chairperson of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA), is likely to meet Chinese President Hu Jintao later in the day.

She and her family travelled from New Delhi to Beijing by a regular commercial Air China flight, and there was remarkably little fuss about their arrival here.

Since she does not hold any government post, Sonia Gandhi will be sitting in an enclosure reserved for the guests of the Chinese government at the Aug 8 opening ceremony at the Bird’s Nest stadium. She will not be in the VVIP enclosure where President Hu, Bush and other heads of states and governments will be seated.

Sports Minister M.S. Gill, who is heading the government delegation, will get that privilege.

In October last year, Sonia Gandhi and her MP son Rahul had led a delegation of the Congress party to China. They were the first visitors invited to China after the Communist Party of China ended its party congress and got a chance to interact with a number of leaders who are likely to play an important role in China in the near future.

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