Updated: 07/31/2014 18:59 | By Agence France-Presse

Kerry says US 'excited' about India's new PM Modi

US Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday he was "excited" about India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi and he wanted a "new relationship" with the new right-wing government.

Kerry says US 'excited' about India's new PM Modi

US Secretary of State John Kerry (L)shares a jovial moment with Indian Minister for External Affairs Sushma Swaraj during a meeting in New Delhi July 31, 2014 - by Raveendran

Kerry said he wanted to "see things move in a very positive way" as he seeks to reboot the US-India relationship after a recent spate of diplomatic disputes between the world's two largest democracies.

"We want a new relationship. We want to see things move in a very positive way," Kerry told India's NDTV during a visit to New Delhi.

"We are excited about Prime Minister Modi's direction and wanting to provide jobs," Kerry in a joint interview along with US Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker.

"The things he wants to do for electricity, for the people. We think there's a lot that the United States and India can work on together."

Kerry opened his first meetings with Modi's government on Thursday, including with Finance and Defence Minister Arun Jaitley, a key player in the new government.

The United States and India, at odds during the Cold War, began to reconcile in the late 1990s with leaders describing the world's two largest democracies as natural allies.

But ties have soured recently after numerous disputes, including charges of US surveillance against Indian politicians, a spat over the arrest of an Indian diplomat in New York last year and a trade rift that could scuttle a global customs deal.

Kerry will meet Friday with Modi, a Hindu nationalist who was shunned by Washington until not long before his sweeping election victory in May.

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