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NRIs organising flash mob dances, callathons to influence voters in India

The saffron clad volunteers have been working tirelessly asking people to support Modi for a second term.

PTI|
Apr 15, 2019, 06.53 PM IST
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HOUSTON: A group of NRIs in Houston organised a flash mob dance while others are involved in callathons to galvanise support for various political parties as the crucial weeks-long general elections began in India.

Donning 'Namo Again' T-Shirts, waving tricolour and dancing on the tunes of 'Namo Namo' song, the BJP supporters organised the flash mob dance in support of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the crowded Miller Outdoor Theatre in Houston downtown Saturday evening.

The saffron clad volunteers have been working tirelessly asking people to support Modi for a second term. These volunteers are hosting 'Chai Pe Charcha' meetings, making calls to voters in India and organising catchy Bollywood flash mobs to reach masses back home, organisers said.

So far the overseas friends of BJP USA (OFBJP USA) has reached over 5,000 voters through direct phone calls, they said.

"Receiving a call from a concerned NRI leaves a special impression on the voter and he/she gets encouraged to participate in the elections as we push for every voter to go out and vote," Achalesh Amar, one of the volunteers leading this campaign, told PTI.

"These supporters of Prime Minister Narendra Modi clearly believe that support can be shown anywhere, whether onlookers can vote in the coming Lok Sabha elections or not. After all, there is always social media," said Madhukar Adi, a BJP volunteer, who organised the flash mob dance Saturday.

Gitesh Desai, the 2019 Pravasi Bhartiya Samman winner and coordinator for NRI4MODI2019 in Houston, said, "the weekly callathon is one of the many activities we have undertaken to support Modi and the BJP for the 2019 general election of India."

Indian-American BJP supporters had a global callathon this weekend. "This was joined by multiple cities in the US, Canada, Japan, the UK and Australia at the same time," Amar said.

Supporters of the Indian National Congress are also organising similar events in support of their party. They are engaging the Indian electorate, by participating in phone banks from New Jersey to California, or by being physically present in India.

Mohinder Singh Gilzian, the new president of Indian Overseas Congress USA, told PTI over phone from New York, that the "upcoming elections in India are very critical, and we are planning to send teams of volunteers so that we can make a difference."

"We will also strive to create a strong social media presence to challenge the misinformation campaign that is waged by the opposition," he said.

"Our country is indeed in a crisis, and as NRIs, we need to step up, be united and defeat this regime in this upcoming election. It is essential that as NRIs who are living in every part of the world, we fight all forms of bigotry and hatred and bring the country back where the government can focus on development and prosperity for all its citizens," he said.
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