Big B scripts high praise for Gujarat, Modi in blog

published on January 7, 2010

Reproduced below is an entry in iconic actor Amitabh Bachchan’s blog, posted this morning, narrating his visit to Gandhinagar, interaction with Chief Minister Narendra Modi, favourable impressions of the State and commitment to promote tourism the heritage-rich Gujarat:

The Gateway Hotel, Ahmedabad
January 6/7, 2010
Wed/Thu 2:49 am

Naked emotions, devoid of any hindrances presented and expressed as nature designed them for humans, or as many believe God the Almighty may have, have a release that remains unmatched in our recorded or unrecorded history. It somnambulates, drives us in an exhausted drain of energy to slumber. But it invigorates. Invigorates to carry function and obligation with some responsibility.

My condition may have been similar, but obligation must never be ignored. An emotion of gratitude and consent by a dignitary that holds office, can become overwhelming. I find myself in such state. Narendra Modi, Chief Minister of Gujarat, in his hospitality and generous demeanor, has through process registered that our film Paa shall be granted tax exemption, the paperwork falling into place.

He lives simply and with mere basic needs and most unlike the head of a State. He speaks with affection on development and progress. He is welcoming to fresh ideas and ideals. His oft repeated phrase of him being a CM, a common man, is not misunderstood. He does and acts as he speaks. He talks of raising the level of awareness for his state through tourism and I volunteer to participate in any activity that would help promote that. Did you know or were you aware that the largest number of heritage sites in the country is in Gujarat

This away from the historic Dwarka Nagari that lies submerged under the sea and is a subject of discovery and research, where architecture, monuments and complete palaces lie buried underneath. The Rann — a massive and wide expanse of miles of white soil, that glows like it is imbedded with millions of diamonds in the night, separating our borders with our neighbour Pakistan. The historic temples — Somnath and Dwarkaji — and endless places of great history all within and still unknown to most of us. So much richness in our own and yet we cherish that which is not ours at times.

He invited his entire cabinet to the showing along with all relevant bureaucrats and important Assembly luminaries. They sit through the entire running with silence and dignity and come out in the lights of the theatre with praise and admiration. For once they admit the politician has not been shown in bad light. Over a light dinner during the interval he turned to me and said: “The main and most important assets for an actor are his face and his voice. They are the elements that attract an audience to a performer. But you have done away with both aspects in this film and still succeeding in making yourself attractive to an audience. That is remarkable!”

I look if I can hide under the table! It’s a job by itself, taking compliments! As I drive back we duck below a spanning sign on a bridge crossing that thanks us for visiting ‘Clean and Green Gandhinagar’. I couldn’t have agreed more.

Heavens! It is 4:07 am! See this is what the FmXt does to me – makes me forget time when in their company!

Good night … Good morning … whatever …

— Amitabh Bachchan

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