Prime Minister Modi’s visit to the US last week was covered 24*7 like a rock tour.
Every visit, every meeting, every address, was covered from beginning to end by both the national as well as international media. However, being Indians, we couldn’t just watch the proceedings without getting outraged over something or the other.
If one zooms out and looks at the larger picture, Modi’s international visits, which were heavily criticized by the opposition, seem to have borne fruit. India has quickly become the world’s No.1 investment destination, beating China through a healthy investment that doubled compared to last year, at 30 billion US dollars.
Modi has changed the way Americans look at India. From a nation that prided itself on culture, yoga, and an exotic past, India today is being seen as a competitive player in the larger scheme of things, a future superpower. It’s amazing to think that just a year ago, Modi was denied a Visa to the US for his role in the Gujarat riots. In just a year, he is rubbing shoulders with Obama, Tim Cook, Satya Nadella, Sundar Pichai and Mark Zuckerberg!
However, nothing that involves Modi can be free of controversy. And you can trust Indian media to come up with a new issue every single day. These were the most useless controversies from Modi’s visit to the US in 2015.
And while you can dismiss it as a journalistic gaffe, there’s no denying that no publicity is bad publicity in today’s times. Here’s the list:
1. Pulling Mark Zuckerberg aside:
So Modi was posing for a picture, when Zuckerberg stood next to him in the middle of the shoot. Modi held him by his arm and pulled him to the side. While the show went on, with flashes and smiles being tossed about generously, the Indian media was quick to pounce on the opportunity, calling Modi a narcissistic, self-obsessed individual. Turns out, the controversy was nothing at all.
2. ‘Daamaat’ comment:
While talking about how politics was done in India earlier, Modi spoke about corrupt ministers who would share the spoils of the loot with their entire family – son, daughter, children, and son-in-law. You don’t have to be Einstein to guess who was being referred to here, and the Indian media jumped on this issue too.
3. Satya Nadella wiping his hands:
Satya Nadella grew up in Hyderabad and went on to become the CEO of Microsoft. After a meeting with Modi where they shook hands, Nadella apparently went back to his place and wiped his hands. While you’d think it was a normal thing to do, the Indian social media lost it. They began crying hoarse about how Nadella thought Indians were cheap and dirty!
4. Facebook DP – Digital India – Internet.org:
As part of the Digital India campaign, Facebook announced a new DP that Indians could use to support Modi and the Digital India campaign. However, someone ran a source code search on the page and found the words ‘Internet.org’ in it.
Quickly, it spread like wildfire, with both sides of the argument calling each other idiots. Facebook released a statement saying it was the work of a junior engineer and the two issues of Internet.org and Digital India are not connected in any way.
May be Modi needs to find employment options for the jobless guys who sit on Facebook and indulge in Armchair Activism on a daily basis. That’s the real need of the hour!
Also Read : PM Modi Achievements