MY VIEW: Senorita, Obama, Modi And Lessons Of Life From The Presidential Visit

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The cult DDLJ dialogue, tea and “mann ki baat” with Modi, and the warm Namaste and Jai Hind – here is why Obama’s recent India visit is so amazing. Our reader Nalin Rai shares with us what he learned and what he looks forward to after the much hyped visit.

When was the last time that a visiting head of state took a cue from one of the cult films of the visiting country to underline the kind of affinity that he expected between both these countries, as it was done by Barrack Obama in his address to the business community from India? At a dinner meeting at Siri Fort in New Delhi, the who’s who of the Indian business community had congregated to listen to him and seek future directions for themselves with regards to the US economy.

Obama left them zapped and floored when he uttered the dialogue from cult film DILWAALE DULHANIYA LE JAAENGE – “Senorita – bade bade deshon mein aisee chotee chotee batein hotee rehtee hain!” Was it not chosen to convey something bigger?

Obama could have chosen some other dialogue, but this seems to have been a conscious choice underlining the fact that with the kind of bonhomie that has been created between the two countries, minor irritants would and could persist, but they have to be tackled and one needs to move forward with the larger goal in mind.


It was a clarion call for the business community to move forward and not be deterred by small obstacles, making the country a better place to live in. The call was also an appeal to the Indian business community to invest in India and make the dream of “Make in India”, a distinct reality.

At the sub-conscious level, the dialogue that was quoted was also a pointer from the Chief Executive of USA that if they did better in India, then they could expect a more conducive environment in the USA to make their presence felt.


It was reciprocation by Obama for the dialogue that Prime Minister Modi had uttered on his trip to the USA last year – “May the Force be with you” – from the cult Hollywood movie STAR WARS.

If one were to see both the dialogues in conjunction, then the aspirations that Modi had kindled through “Force” finds a culmination in “Senorita”, and one need not be deterred with minor irritants as the Force is going to be with us – only when one factors in the dialogue of DDLJ.

Obama also left a challenge for the Indian business community as also the country to start giving due consideration to the climatic change. There is no better medium to create awareness about a serious subject like climate change than through the visual medium, the medium of popular cinema. So far, films that are being made in the country focus only upon entertainment. But the time has come for film makers to take the responsibility to use this medium to create awareness about protecting the environment.

Listen to the full version of Modi and Obama’s “Mann ki Baat”-

Obama’s visit also underlined the popular Latin Maxim “Carpe Diem” or seize the day. It happened for the first time in the US history that a serving President sat out in the open for more than two hours – sweeping aside all security considerations, giving a strong message that one needs to step outside one’s comfort zone if one has to be make an impact.

It also affirmed what the erstwhile US Secretary of State Collin Powell used to say: “Problem with us is that we tend to govern our relationships with the official positions that we hold in our official capacities.”

Till we step outside the protocols and circumvent the supposed rules and directions, things will not move forward in the desired manner.


Time has come for us to shrug our official appendages, devote ourselves to the cause of the country and not be deterred by the irritants, as they would continue to manifest and they have to be taken in stride if India has to move forward.

There indeed could not have been a better visit to India at the beginning of a new year to inspire the country to devote itself in nation building, and even if a few start making efforts in this direction, this out of the way visit of Obama would have served its purpose and would be quoted as a milestone in the history of our country.

– Nalin Rai

All pics courtesy:

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About the author: Nalin Rai is a development professional who likes to bring to relief the development initiatives happening on their own in the moffusil parts of India and bring them into mainstream.

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