One Championship

Fabulous turnout for Modi


Hasina and Halima Khan at the event. Photo: Subir Bhaumik

 

For two strikingly beautiful Burmese Muslim sisters, Narendra Modi is a man of vision and action.

Both turned up to hear the visiting Indian Prime Minister address the huge turnout of around 20,000 men and women at the National Indoor Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

''He has done wonderful things in India for his countrymen, I wish our leaders can replicate it,'' said Hasina Khan, with sister Halima nodding in agreement.

''Modi comes across as a man with a mission and a vision determined to take his country into the Big League,'' said Halima Khan.

Insisting they were patriotic Burmese, the two sisters just wanted the good things happening in India to happen in their country.

Though Muslims, they were neither interested in Modi's Gujarat riots stink or his demonetisation gaffe. 

''If a leader works, he will make mistakes but it is important he works tirelessly,'' said Hasina,who can walk into Hollywood for the asking.

Sanjay Hirpara of Indian origin was grateful to Modi for paying a visit to Myanmar when other Indian prime ministers have given a pass.

''I congratulate him for coming. He is a strong leader and his visit will be good for Indian origin people here,'' said Kupuria, pointing to the packed Indoor Stadium as Netaji's INA tunes “Kadamkadambarayeja'' played loudly.

The Indian community put out a formidable cultural extravaganza with all communities performing to showcase the diversity of India.

From Tagore dance to the tune of “Eklacholo re” to Gujarati and Telegu dance to what have you was up on the stage, Hollywood included.

Nita Verma of Gujarati origin but married to a man with roots in UP was especially proud.

''Why should I not be happy! India finally got a great leader from where I hail from,'' said the portly housewife.

''Modi makes us feel Indian," said T.K Pal. "Like Netaji Subhas did during World War2.''

As petite Moutussi of Bengali origin danced to the tune of Tagore's “Eklacholo re”, Pal quipped : ''Is not Modi a bit of eklacholo?''

There are currently nearly one million people of Indian origin in Myanmar. Their numbers dropping drastically since the Second World War and especially after General Ne Win's 1967 Aliens Act which led to nationalisation of their property.

For those still living in a Myanmar scarred by ethnic conflict and rebellions, those of Indian origin needed an event like Modi's public performance to energise the community.

That Modi also a hit with Burmese, specially Gennext, is surely something of a boon for Indian diplomacy at a time it is focused to connect to Myanmar for a whole host of reasons from making a success of the “Act East Policy” to restricting Chinese influence.

''I challenge the Chinese to put up a performance like the Indian community did today. It was a celebration of diversity which is hugely relevant for Myanmar," said T. Rishab, who conducted the whole programme.

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