PM takes tumble in her stride
JULIA Gillard has taken a spectacular tumble during her visit to India, landing face down after the heel of her shoe became stuck in wet grass.
The Prime Minister laughed off the embarrassing stumble, saying it was an occupational hazard for women that men might not understand.
Ms Gillard broke her fall with her hands, but ended up face down on the ground.
As Indian minders rushed to her aid, she told them: ‘‘It’s OK, I’m all right.’’
Surrounded by TV cameras, Ms Gillard showed good humour as she joked about the slip after a visit to the Gandhi Memorial in New Delhi on the final day of her three- day state visit to India.
‘‘My heel got stuck in grass,’’ she said.
‘‘ I’m fine. For men who get to wear flat shoes all day every day, if you wear a heel it can get embedded in soft grass and when you pull your foot out the shoe doesn’t come and the rest of it is as you saw.’’
Ms Gillard’s diplomatic skills were more sure-footed as she held high- level talks with political and business leaders about Australia’s push to boost ties with the booming Indian economy of 1.2 billion people.
The PM announced she wanted Australia to step- up military cooperation with India, including full naval exercises.
She also elevated India to the top six countries that ‘‘matter most to Australia’’ — placing it alongside the US, China, Indonesia, Japan and South Korea.
Britain held a special place in Australia’s history, but was not as important in the modern age, she said.
Ms Gillard has been warmly welcomed in India and been extremely popular, especially with women who have seen the video of her ‘‘ misogynist’’ spray at Tony Abbott in Parliament.
NO HARM: Indian officials aid the Prime Minister after her fall.