With Modi-wave overwhelming people of Indian origin living around the world, the Bharatiya Janata Party appears to have decided to rope in some of their fans from abroad for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.
Soon, the NRIs will be found campaigning for the BJP as they are known for the kind of influence they have on the people at large.
And the focus, in keeping with the party’s campaign imperatives, has been on Bengali-speaking NRIs.
So far, more than 300 Bengali-speaking volunteers have signed up for the plan, as the BJP aims to make significant gains in West Bengal.
Making elaborate efforts to reach out, the BJP’s foreign policy cell’s chief Vijay Chauthaiwale has e-mailed NRIs with an attached proforma to various countries where Indians reside.
“Around 6,000 mails were responded to, we got 700 firm responses on those willing to campaign in India, with correctly filled out forms, etc.,” a media report suggest citing a party official.
Apart from biographical details, the proforma included information on which State the person belonged to, which constituency did his/her home in India fall within, and whether the NRI would like to come to India or organise campaign events in her/his country of residence.
Besides getting the NRIs to influence their friends and relatives in India, Chauthaiwale said the overseas campaign events had the potential to have a spin-off impact here, thanks to social media’s reach.
Among the most active NRIs were those from the U.S., the U.K. (where a car rally in support of the BJP’s campaign was held recently), the Gulf countries and Australia. The party official said that apart from Bengali-speaking volunteers, the largest groups were from Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh.