Crowd of around 18,000 people at SAP Center was shouting “Modi, Modi, Modi…” by 7:09 PM on Sep 27, 2015 at SAP Center… Narendra Modi was about to enter the arena.
Many US Senators/Congressmen/women were on the stage to welcome him and the emcee Raj Mathai announced..
“The Moment has come that we all have been waiting for…
Ladies and Gentlemen, put your hands together for the Honorable Prime Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi” and everyone in the arena had hysteric, historic moment, including me..
And Narendra Modi started walking on the red carpet, with his left hand waving at people around him and in the arena. I am sure he wanted to shake hands with everyone hanging over the aisle to shake hands with him, but probably in honor of the time, he chose to graciously walked through the aisle, smiling and waving at them (He did shake hands with people afte the session)
The stage was exactly in the center of arena, it was open stage with 360 degrees view. Showing his gratitude to people by doing नमस्कार (Namaskar) to them while he went around on the stage.
Then, he shook hands with all the dignitaries on the stage.
The chorus group of Mahesh Kale and Jayanti Sahastrabuddhe sang American National Anthem first and then Indian National Anthem. Narendra Modi was humming along while Indian National Anthem was being sung.
After the National Anthems, he went around the stage, waiving at the crowd, genuinely smiling at them.
And then he started speaking..
Good Evening California…
He could feel the excitement in the crowd right at the outset.
Very First thing he did was given tribute to Shahid Veer Bhagat Singh, considering it was Sep 28, 2015. He got people into action mode right away, but getting them to say – अमर रहे, अमर रहे – right after he said – Veer Bhagat Singh, twice.
One might wonder, how come he started his speech in America with Veer Bhagat Singh? I see some connection. When I was entering the arena, I saw few (may be 30-40) Sikhs outside the arena, doing demonstration with signs saying “India is out of Khalistan”. They were trying to portray Narendra Modi as Anti-Sikh. By, paying his regards to Bhagat Singh, who was born Sikh, Narendra Modi smartly conveyed that he respects Sikh people.
Prior to this speech, he went around many places in Silicon Valley and met many big shots like Satya Nadela of Microsoft, Mark Zuckerburg from Facebook, Sundar Pichai from google, Shantanu Narayan of Adobe and many more. He showed his gratitude by saying that he was fortunate to meet all the people in SAP arena today, just he was fortunate to meet same number of people at Madison Square Garden last year. So, he does value each and everyone, not just the CEOs of big companies, as his real power comes from common men.
“हिंदुस्तान की वाइब्रेंट छबि मै कैलिफ़ोर्निया में अनुभव कर रहा हूँ, He said based on the vibration he received in 2 days in Silicon Valley. Silicon Valley truly represents the spirit of India- in technology, entrepreneurship and even culturally.
यहाँ जिसे भी मिला, उसके चेहरे पे चमक है, आंखोमे सपने है , और कुछ कर दिखानेका संकप्ल है – This is how you will feel when you go to India. India is the country where 65% of the population is below age 35. So, when I go there, I feel that optimism on their face, dreams in their eyes and determination to do something great. He saw the same thing in California. By establishing this connection, he raised the credibility of Indian youth seeking to collaborate, partner with companies in California. It also created a mindset where any company in California, when they looks to hire any person from India, they will have some baseline characteristics to count on.
When you go to California, you will be able to feel the respect one gets, if he/she is of Indian origin, and that does not happen just like that. It took decades of hard work by the Indian people in California and for that matter all over USA, to build that credibility, where you start getting top respect among all immigrants. Narendra Modi felt that and he expressed his gratitude to each and every one who made it possible through their extra ordinary work.
आज पुरे विश्वमे भारत की जो एक नयी पहचान बनी है, भारत की जो एक नयी छबि बनी है, भारत के सम्बन्ध में जो पुरानी सोच थी वोह बदलने के किये दुनिया को मजबूर होना पड़ा है , उसका कारण आपकी उंगलियों की कमाल है .
Your fingers created magic on the keyboard and the computer and this gave India a new identity. Your skill & commitment is wonderful: PM
— PMO India (@PMOIndia) September 28, 2015
The fact that the CEOs of word’s three major companies – Microsoft, Google and Adobe are Indian, goes to show the contribution Indians in IT Industry have made to create a new identity and image of India. Those CEOs are just the tip of the iceberg. There is a whole herd of highly intelligent Indians, who made significant contribution to current World IT environment. Then came an interesting remark. He said – जो बदलने से इनकार करेगा, वोह इक्कीसवी शताब्दी में irrelevant होने वाला है. I am sure he meant it to the whole world, and it shows his confidence, but I think he directed this specifically to Pakistan. With time, we all have to change and move on. The ones who want to get stuck in their old way of living, will be left behind. He addressed the much-talked to issue of Brain Drain nicely. Lot of professionals like me left India long back and at times we were made feel guilty for leaving the country that gave us everything, including higher education. We were told that if we stayed back, we would have served our country better.
That never resonated with me. I came to USA in 1998 and I feel like, I have done more for my country that I would have been able to do by living there, in form of financial contribution, social contribution and overall image building for Inia.
I consider myself an ambassador for India, while interacting with anyone in USA. For that person, I am INDIA, and that is a huge responsibility.And I am not the only one, majority of us are doing that. That constant vigilance about building our reputation as highly intelligent, accountable, professionals in USA is now starting to pay off.
Indians in USA are the richest and one of the most respected immigrants in USA. Narendra Modi has been coming to USA for many decades. He has witnessed the change in the scenario and he realized the true potential and impact of professional and non-professional immigrants like me.
He discarded the notion that it was a brain drain, he actually rephrased it as BRAIN GAIN – which is obvious by the fact that CEOs of world’s top companies are Indian.
He also assured people in India that, there will be plenty of geniuses to serve the mother India in India.
माँ भारती तो बहुरत्ना वसुंधरा है, वहां तो एक के बाद एक brain की फसल होती रहेने वाली है.
कभी जो लगता था ये brain drain है, मुझे लगता है की ये brain deposit हो रहा है. और ये deposit हुआ जो brain है वोह मौके की तलाश में है. जिस दिन मौका मिलेगा, व्याज समेत ये brain माँ भारती के काम आयेगा.
ये ब्रेन ड्रेन नहीं है, ये तो बहुमूल्य डिपाजिट है
His vision of SKILL INDIA and STRTUP INDIA will produce more skilled visionaries right there in India and contribute towards a better India, while Indians abroad do their part.
— Vikas Swarup (@MEAIndia) September 27, 2015
He rightly said that it was not a brain drain, it was a gain. After removing that guilt from all of us, who are relatively “recent” immigrants, he went to the “early immigrants’ who came to USA century back and started farming in California. He paid respect to those farmers, who once “happened to be” Sikhs. Look at his genius, outside of the arena, there were handful of Sikhs raising their flags for Khalistan, and here he is, praising the Sikhs. He talked about how those Sikhs and other Indians became part of the freedom fight for India, while they were thousands miles away, in 19th century.
Our Sikh brothers came here years ago & began living here. When Indian wanted freedom here too there was a movement for India’s freedom: PM — PMO India (@PMOIndia) September 28, 2015
अगर उन्नीसवी शताब्दी में , खेतमे मजदूरी करनेके लिए आया हुआ मेरा किसान , भारत की गुलामी के लिए अगर बैचेन था, तो इक्कीसवी सदी में मेरा नौजवान भारतकी गरीबीके लिए बैचेन है , और वोह भी भारत के लिए कुछ करेगा.
First he talked about current immigrant, then he talked about early immigrants. Then he talked about how those immigrants contributed to India and that was easy Segway for him to inspire “current immigrants” to do something about India and its poverty. This was a non-threatening, non-pushing way to motivate people from within at emotional level, rather than making them feel guilty.
As his signature style, then Narendra Modi talked about Dhan Gopa Mukerji ( Born 1890-died 1936). He was the first South Asian and first Indian who graduated from Stanford. He wrote more than20 books in kinds of subject, including poetry, philosophy, and drama. He played major role in making American people understand Indian traditions and culture through his books and personal efforts. When we know and understand our own history, we feel proud and Narendra Modi helped people do that by remembering Dhan Gopal Mukerji. His autobiographical book “Out and Outcast” described his journey from India and Bengali culture and other aspects of Indian culture very well.
Then he talked about Dilip Sinh sood , who studied at University of California, Berkeley and served in US congress from 1957-1963. Just on a side note, he was also Sikh. He was the first Indian to be elected in US legislature.
He kept finding connections between California and India, by citing examples, like he talked about Indian Leader Jay Prakash Narayan, who studied in California and lead people to a great future based on the glorious past.
Then, he changed gear and confidently stated the future of India as he sees it in this words –
हर कोई ये तो जरुर मनाता है की, इक्कीसवि सदी एशिया की सदी है, लेकिन पिछले किछ समय से अब लोग ये नहीं कहेते है की इक्कीसवि सदी एशिया की सदी है, अब लोग कह रहे है , इक्कीसवि सदी हिंदुस्तानकी सदी है. ये आज दुनिया मानने लग गयी है
It takes guts to claim what he claims and he does back it up with action to show the world that 21st century belongs to India.
They he raised the question that how did this change came? The crowd started shouting – Modi, Modi.., implying that Modi did it. He, as always, gave that credit to the people of India.
जब जनता जनार्दन संकल्प करती है , तो इश्वरके भी आशीर्वाद मिलते है. Obviously, people of India deserves the credit for their decision to support Narendra Modi with full majority. When people make the decision, God’s blessings are showered on them.
In continuation of the same theme, he said – सारा विश्व, जो कल तक हिंद्स्तान को हांसिये पर देखता था, आज वो हिंदुस्तान को केंद्र बिंदु के रूप में देख रहा है. So, basically, he talked about how word’s perspective changed about India recently, and how rest of the word is looking forward to connect with India.
कभी भारत विश्वके साथ जुड़ने के लिए अथाग परिश्रम करता था, लेकिन आज वक्त ऐसा बदला है की दुनिया हिंदुस्तानसे जुड़ने के लिए उत्सुक हो रही है
Every country wants to now connect with India, due to the atmosphere of trust created in India.
Sometimes people wonder, how in the world I keep track of so much Information about Modi and India, by sitting here in USA. Obviously I have some help. But Narendra Modi have great example in the language that every Indian can understand and that is the language of Cricket.
He said that if you are watching the game by sitting in the stadium, it’s hard to keep up with everything going on in the game, but if you watch same game on TV in the comfort of your home, you can have better perspective on it, as you will have more date point to look at.
Same way, people sitting outside USA, are able to better analyze एंड support any problems in India.
Then he switched the topic, reminding people about his own past promises and his commitment to stand by it.
In the past, he has said that – he will do whatever it takes (to make a better India).
He reiterated it here, not to get ovation but affirm his own commitment. He said –
मै परिश्रम करने में कोई कमी नहीं रखुंगा.
देशवासिओने जो मुझे जिम्मेदारी दी है, उसके लिए पल पल और शारीर का कण कण, मै शत प्रतिशत काम में लगाये रखुंगा.
If you look at his schedule on any given day, you will know what he means. The amount of actions he takes and how he uses each waking (and may be sleeping too) moment of his life towards the mission he has chosen for himself, which is to serve the people of India and mother India.
Then he changed the tone a little bit. This was his plan to answer those, especially in main stream Indian media, who kept ranting about, work not getting done. He asked people if he fulfilled his promises so far or not and the crown unanimously agreed with him. I felt that he was a little bit in self-praising mode, but I guess, when you are getting such an overwhelming love and respect from all over the world, and when you are actually doing the work, it becomes natural to seek little approval in public. But, the bottom line was, he showed his continued commitment.
He then smartly started smashing congress indirectly, by listing how much money made by whom. His goal was to point towards the corruption that happened in the past and show people that his government is scam-free.
He said multiple times before that – मै ना करप्शन करूँगा और करने दूंगा. He continued the same tone and ask people if they felt mad, frustrated and helpless, looking at enormous amounts money made by previous government in scams. He spoke, but he gave voice to the feelings of all of us.. It was kind of a movie dialogue/song, but it felt good to hear from someone who meant it from deep within his heart.
Sometimes, it feels to people that the claims he is making about the growth of India sounds Pollyannaish ( as a matter of fact, in one of his dialogue with Children on Teacher’s day, he recommended children to read that book to develop positive attitude in life) – too optimistic. But there is a reason for his claims – we all believe that India will grow and progress, because of the youth of India.
In his words, – मेरा देश आगे बढेगा क्यूंकि मेरा देश जवान है .He has been talking about this from Day 1. His tremendous faith in the youth of India will take India to new heights. 800 Million people, 1600 million arms/hands – that is the power of India.
— PMO India (@PMOIndia) September 28, 2015
There was time, just a few years ago, when in BRICS, I (for India) was becoming a doubtful country. Rest of the countries in BRICS had lost confidence in India. After Narendra Modi became Prime Minster, I quickly regained its position in BRICS. पुरे BRICS में अगर दम से कोई खड़ा है तो वोह I खड़ा है . And that happned due to financial stability and growth steps taken by Modi government. World Bank, IMF, Moody’s and all other rating agencies have confirmed that India is the fastest growing economy.
आज विश्वमे सबसे तेज गति से आगे बढ़ने वाली इकोनोमी किसी देश की है, तो वोह देश का नाम है – हिंदुस्तान.
We all can see the change, when we go to India, but still a long way to go. Ray of hope is there, grueling work is ahead, to make it happen and make it sustainable. The reason for that is – the size of the country, number of people in it, pre-existing rampant poverty. But despite all those challenges, India is making definite progress and the world has started accepting that fact. During his short time, since the oath, India definitely has made its mark in the fields of science and space.
India has solid and strong vedic and Upnishad culture ages. We all are proud of it. But somehow, we got stuck in that rich heritage and did not pay attention to Upagrah, means, we did not make any progress in latest technology and science. Majority people in the world did not understand and/or accept the Upmnishad. We did not lose out heritage, but we made a quantum leap to Upagrah from Upanishad.
आज वही देश उपनिषद के पढ़ते पढ़ते उपग्रह की चर्चा करने लग गया है
India is the first country that reached MARS in first attempt. That is a significant achievement for India. I piggy backed himself into that sentence stating that lot of people tried to become PM for decades, and he became PM in first trial. He once again, gave the credit back to Indian people, for both – the success in space missions and him becoming PM.
here was a time, few decades back, when Vikram Sarabhai, Homi Bhabha and other visionaries tried to launch India’s career in space, but people on power did not support it much, quoting the poverty of the country. It was a general consensus not to waste money on space mission when people do not know what and how they will eat tomorrow. There was lot of debate and politics about not going forward with the space mission.
And people who made those decision, did not have vision or understanding of how the satellites can help India prosper. He gave few examples of how it’s helping now:
- Farmer’s getting the weather info to plan his seeds
- Fisherman gets the info about where to fish, via satellite
- More than 170 departments in government are using space technology
E governance is Effective, easy and most economical governance He has a success track record of e-governance in Gujarat and he is implementing country wide. Giving total control to people in their palm, to get the work done in government.
Then came the big thing – His vision of DIGITAL INDIA.
We all know how technology has changed the world and gave the world a new direction. Narendra Modi himself uses technology to fullest for personal use and government use.
His vision is to implement each and every aspect of technology to enhance and improve the day to day lives of people in India. One of the reason for him being in Silicon Valley was to collaborate with all the tech giants to help him carry out his overall vision of – J.A.M. – JAM Theory J stands for Jan Dhan Yojana A Stands for Adhar Card M – Mobile He talked briefly about Jan Dhan Yojana. You can search on this site for details about his Jan Dhan Yojana Program.
In 1969, all the banks in India were nationalized to help poor, but it never served its purpose. More than 50%, mainly poor people, never saw or benefited from the Banking sector. He started Jan Dhan Yojana, to include all those people in the banking sector. And he was able to open 18 crores new bank accounts.
The opening amount was waiver, means, one can open account with no deposit. Banks opposed it, saying that how can they just open the account without a single rupee deposit, how will they even recover the money spend to open the account and in the stationaries.
He had good answer ready – He said – हमने चालीस साल बहोत मौज की है, अब पसीना बहाना होगा .
And he meant it. We all know the lavish life and work style of the bankers so far in India, and now was the time to payback those “easy” years and to serve to poor people of India. Including everyone in the banking sector is one of the genius of Narendra Modi, the effect of which will last for long long time to come.
Even though the opening deposit was waived, all the poor people deposited मैंने गरीबो की अमीरी देखि. अमीरों की गरीबी तो हम जानते है, लेकिन जब गरीबो की अमीरी देखते है तो सीना तन्न जाता है Despite the fact that, no deposit was required to open to bank account, more than 32,000 crores of RS were deposited in the banks – that’s lot of cash – that can be and will be used – to support small business and other projects.
This reflects the mentality of people of India – each and everyone wants to contribute towards the progress of the country. Next in JAM is A.
A for Adhar Card – A special number based on biometric – to avoid frauds.
And M for Mobile governance. As I mentioned before, he basically wants to make the best use of technology to make sure that each and every citizen can get his work done from mobile phone.
Technology can help end corruption.
He gave the example of how the government subsidy of Rs 150-200 per gas cylinder drained the money of government due to corruption.
He implemented the plan where based on the Adhar card, eligible citizen now gets the money straight to his Bank Account opened as part of Jan Dhan Yojana. This way, there is no middle man involved in transferring money – where most of the corruption used to happen.
The technology solved one corruption – evident by the fact that – before Modi’s plan – 19 crore people used to get this subsidy ( multiple this by RS 200 – and imagine the money going somewhere !!) every month.
After Modi’s Plan – it came down to 13 crore people. That means, 5-6 crores Subsidies were going to middle man. That money is now saved, and will be used for the programs that progress and prosper India.
This is how change comes.
He gave another example of how smart thinking and technology can help remove corruption.
He talked about Urea fertilizer that is used in the farms, for which government gives almost 80,000 crore RS subsidy every year. The reality is – farmers gets only small percentage of it – rest of it goes to scammers and middlemen. Most of the urea was diverted to other chemical factories.
Modi applied his genius here. He asked to coat urea with a special chemical that made that urea usable only for the farming purpose, and nothing else. This assured that Urea will be delivered to farmers only and not to someone else. This program just started, so we do not know how much money will be saved, but he is sure that it will be a huge amount. And the farmer will have betters crops.
He talked about – his appeal to people, who can afford, to let go of gas subsidy. Initially people laughed at him, as no one wants to let go of free money. But, as he expected and believe in the goodness of people, 30 Lakhs people surrendered the subsidy.
The goodness of 30 lakhs people and many people like the, is the true strength of India, who believes in doing good and doing what is right.
He also talked about SKILL development program that he started. Degrees are important, but practical skills are equally important for anyone to earn his living, as those skills will help India grow.
He bragged a bit about other achievements of his government saying that there is lot to talk and if he talked for 2 hours every day about it, it will take him at least 15 days to cover everything – in other words – there is a lot going on – in every area of development in India.
He talked about Terrorism and climate change and said both can be solved.
He told the world that India is fully prepared to tackle the terrorism and climate change. He talks about it, where he goes, very seriously, including pressuring UN.
Can you believe that UN does not have clear definition of terrorism and UN is now 70 years old?
Modi correctly pointed out that –
अगर डेफिनिशन करेने में इतना वक्त लगेगा, तो terrorism को निपटनेमे कितने साल लगेंगे ?
Narendra Mod has written to all the country urging them to pressurize UN to define terrorism. UN should come up with criteria that defines terrorism and that we can identify the country who is supporting it. That way, it will be clear to the world, who is terrorist and who is humanitarian and who is with whom.
He was very aggressive and passionate about defining terrorism and the countries that support it, that way everyone knows who is playing the game.
Not having clear definition has led to made up categories of – Good terrorism and Bad Terrorism.
गुड terrorism और बाद terrorism से हम मानवता की रक्षा नहीं कर सकते, terrorism terrorism है. He is very clear that there is nothing like good terrorism – at the end of day – its terrorism.
Unless the terrorism hits your own country, you might think it’s a law and order problem. He said with regard to America’s reaction in the past to defining terrorism. View of America on terrorism, when there was bomb blast in NY Stock exchange.
He appealed to humanitarian forces to get united to fight terrorism – including UN, going back to time of Buddha and Gandhi and telling the world that at core of India, there is Peace. We can’t afford to kill innocent people in this 21st century.
He concluded with his vision to make the lives of everyone in India better and see India prosper.
He thanked all the congressman/women, senators, who were present, for supporting India.
भारत माता की जय – आवाज़ हिंदुस्तान तक पहोंचानी चाहिए .
In his signature style, he got the crowd the say – Jay – after he sais – Bharat Mata ki – five times.
And then once again, he paid tribute to Bhagat Singh by getting the crown shout – Amar Rahe, Amar Rahe, after he said – Veer Bhagat Sinh – four times.
The speech concluded with crown chanting – Modi, Modi , Modi..
I was one of them..
Balloons fall from the ceiling and the whole coliseum became colorful, joyous with the Chak De India playing in the background…
He came back to announce that from Dec 2, 2015, Air India will have direct flight from Delhi to San Francisco , 3 times a week. It was definitely a good news, but we all hope that the service of Air India improves.
Walking back form Stage, he did shake hands with many people, which he could not do coming to the stage
It was a great experience to feel the vibes listening to Narendra Modi.
Look forward to another experience next year.. May be in Houston, TX ??0