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Joe Biden supporters look to Bollywood hit to woo Indo-Americans: the Tribune India

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New York, October 18

Turning a Bollywood hit into a campaign anthem, supporters of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden are wooing Indo-American voters with an eye on swing states where small margins can decide who will become the next president.

Ajay Bhutoria, who produced the video, told IANS he wants to reach the estimated 1.3 million Indo-American voters through a unique campaign medium with an element of popular culture that resonates with them.

The campaign video based on the motif of the hit song from the film “Lagaan” “Chale Chalo” composed by AR Rahman includes appeals to voters in 14 languages.

“We chose this song from the movie ‘Lagaan’. My wife and I wrote the lyrics, “Chale chalo Biden, Harris ko vote do,” Bhutoria said. He is on YouTube and circulating on social networks.

A shorter version of it in three languages ​​is broadcast on TV Asia, a popular channel among Indo-Americans.

Bhutoria said the main target of the campaign was Indo-Americans living in the swing states – the ones neither side locked down and who could go either way.

After working in 2016 for Hillary Clinton, who lost the election despite obtaining 2.3 million more votes than Donald Trump because she failed to carry the electoral college of delegates from A state that finally decides who the president is, Bhutoria has said he is determined not to see this happen again.

Seeing that she lost Michigan by only 10,000 votes and a few others by narrow margins, he wanted to mobilize Indo-American voters there who could make the difference.

He and his wife, Vinita, also produced another video, “America ka neta kaisa ho, Joe Biden jaisa” (How should the American leader be? Much like Joe Biden!) And a set of visuals with catchy taglines like, “Trump hatao, America bachao” (Remove Trump, Save America).

The sentiments on these visuals have been echoed in the idioms of 13 other languages. They all take turns on social media.

Bhutoria said his campaign incorporated so many languages ​​because the Indian diaspora was as diverse as India and voters needed to get the message across in their own native languages.

A member of the Biden Campaign National Finance Committee and the Asian American Pacific Islander Leadership Council, he organized fundraisers for Democrats and Biden’s wife Jill was at his home in March, he said. he declares. His ties to Biden and Harris go back a long time, he said.

He had worked with Biden on a program when he was vice president and had known vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris from when she was California attorney general.

“They’re both going to do great things, especially when it comes to the Native American community,” Bhutoria said.

He said Trump was all about phot-ops when it came to India and Indians while Biden had concrete agendas. He claimed that in areas where Trump failed, Biden would act – restart H1 professional visas that were shut down, revamp the green card system to end the Indian backlog, strike a trade deal with India and join the Paris Pact on the climate to work with India to fight against climate change.

“Biden is going to stand with India against aggression from China, Biden is strictly against cross-border terrorism in South Asia,” he said.

The “Chale Chalo” video begins with an introduction from Biden, who says, “This campaign with Indo-Americans at the top levels, which of course includes at the top of the pile our dear friend who will be the first vice-Native American president. in the history of the United States of America – Kamala Harris.

He later follows in the song with a line of young men lined up like in the film but holding Indian and American flags.

While the song is playing, clips appear of people making calls in different languages.

Bhutoria, who is based in Silicon Valley, said he has founded several companies, including a technology consultancy. He said his campaigns don’t need a budget because people donate their time and services to do so and some friends support the broadcast on the TV channel. IANS



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