Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s event ‘Howdy Modi’ in Houston was held on Sunday night, amid much attention from the Indian media and gushing from NRIs. Modi and US President Donald Trump patted each others backs and talked of amazing relationships between the two countries.
The event seemed to be a PR dream with Modi seeking a standing ovation for the abrogation of Article 370 and asking people to vote for Trump again using his own campaign slogan — ‘Abki baar, Trump Sarkar’. Howdy Modi was all over social media and television channels in India.
What the Indian media did not say, the media in the US did. CNN said Trump and Modi were two sides of the same coin. Modi was even accused of stroking Trump’s ego.
While we have been getting constant updates of even the Twitter bonhomie between the two leaders, what the TV channels forgot to show was a massive protest in Houston in light of the ‘Howdy Modi’ even.
People used the hashtag #AdiosModi to ask Modi to go back and serve up answers on what was happening in Kashmir which was still under lockdown. The crowd was a diverse gathering of Hindus, Sikhs, Muslims and Christians.
Protesters carried posters saying ‘Real Hindus don’t lynch’and ‘Hinduism is real, hindutva is fake’
There were chants of “Modi, Modi you can’t hide, you committed genocide”.
Modi’s critics called the Howdy Modi event a place where white extremists met Hindu extremists
Some posters compared Modi to Hitler and some slogans compared RSS to the Ku Klux Klan.
Al Jazeera reported that thousands had gathered outside the stadium to protest against Modi.