This morning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi posted close to 30 tweets asking selected actors, celebrities, ‘spiritual gurus’, opposition leaders, sports persons and media houses to encourage the public to cast their votes for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.
Mohanlal, Nagarjuna and AR Rahman were featured on this list. Karan Johar, Ranveer Singh, Alia Bhatt, Vicky Kaushal, Ayushmann Khurrana and others from the Bollywood group that met Modi early this year to discuss nation-building, were tagged.
Modi asked Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Aamir Khan, and Karan Johar to “creatively ensure high voter awareness and participation in the coming elections.” He also appealed to Shankar Ehsaan Loy and Manoj Bajpayee.
Your performances have entertained millions over the years and you have also won many awards. I request you to create greater voter awareness and urge people to vote in large numbers.
The award here is, a vibrant democracy.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 13, 2019
Some of them responded to the PM:
— Mohanlal (@Mohanlal) March 13, 2019
Absolutely right sir, Hon PM. Let us all engage as citizens of the biggest democracy in the world. Let us fulfill our responsibility, and avail of our right to get our voice heard.
— Aamir Khan (@aamir_khan) March 13, 2019
Honourable Prime Minister @narendramodi we as a fraternity are dedicated to the cause of creating high voter awareness and will make sure every endeavour is made to communicate the power of voting for a solid and Democratic INDIA! Jai Hind! https://t.co/aoMnfwvIjA
— Karan Johar (@karanjohar) March 13, 2019
Well said @narendramodi ji. The true hallmark of a democracy lies in people’s participation in the electoral process. Voting has to be a superhit prem katha between our nation and its voters 🙂 ?? https://t.co/rwhwdhXj1S
— Akshay Kumar (@akshaykumar) March 13, 2019
Honourable PM @narendramodi ji, as aware citizens and opinion leaders it is the duty of every public figure to spread this awareness. We need to vote in maximum numbers and restore faith in the world’s largest democracy. Jai Hind. https://t.co/IcMU9AQA1w
— Ayushmann Khurrana (@ayushmannk) March 13, 2019
Apart from the three news agencies – Mathrubhumi, Dhina Thanthi, and Eenadu, others from media to be featured were from Times Group, Republic TV, Swarajya Mag, Aaj Tak, and India Today.
Modi then asked for the participation of the spiritual gurus he has been associated with in the past. He tweeted to Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Sadhguru, Baba Ramdev asking for “greater voter awareness.” In a tweet after this he asked industrialists Ratan Tata, Anand Mahindra, Ashish Chauhan to support the participation of voters saying, “India wins when our democracy gets strengthened.”
For any citizen of a democracy, casting a vote is not just a right, but a sacred obligation. India is the largest democracy in the world. We must also be the nation with the highest voter participation..Yes @narendramodi ji, we can make this happen… https://t.co/Wb6mo5GKPE
— anand mahindra (@anandmahindra) March 13, 2019
Modi’s tweets said that these were the people who had made India proud, and had the power to influence others. He said, “The award here is a vibrant democracy.”
The prime minister also tagged chief ministers Nitish Kumar, Naveen Patnaik, HD Kumaraswamy, N Chandrababu Naidu and Pawan Chamling. He called out to Rahul Gandhi, Mamta Banarjee, Mayawati, MK Stalin and other opposition leaders for support.
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav responded with a dig at Modi, urging people to elect a new prime minister in the Lok Sabha elections.
दिल ख़ुश हुआ कि प्रधान मंत्री जी भी #MahaGathbandhan से #MahaParivartan की अपील कर रहे हैं। मैं भी सभी भारतीय नागरिकों से अनुरोध करता हूँ कि ज़्यादा से ज़्यादा संख्या में मतदान करें और नया प्रधान मंत्री चुनें। https://t.co/8BsWOdClud
— Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) March 13, 2019
Modi’s tweets came soon after he posted ‘four requests for democracy’ on his blog, asking people to plan and register to be able to vote these elections. The Lok Sabha polls will be held for 543 seats between April 11 and May 19. The counting of votes will happen on May 23.
Image Courtesy: NDTV