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Modi tags about 100 people in marathon Twitter mention spree to drum up voter participation

Modi tags about 100 people in marathon Twitter mention spree to drum up voter participation
Prime Minister Narendra Modi discovered the Twitter tag button and went all out on Tuesday, tagging a wide range of cultural and political figures in order to encourage voter turnout in upcoming elections.

The 29-tweet spree, sent out to Modi's 46mn followers, called upon Bollywood stars, politicians, religious leaders, and athletes to use their fame to encourage voting. Each tweet included a personalized message relevant to the line of work of those mentioned.

The prime minister didn’t ask for support for his own party, keeping his comments aimed at bringing out voters in general. His first tweet was a sportsman-like message for members of the opposition parties he will be competing against come April.

While his cause of rallying support for democracy is certainly admirable, his efforts to appeal to certain cultural segments came across as a little out of touch.

In a tweet directed at popular actors Ranveer Singh, Varun Dhawan, and Vicky Kaushal, Modi stressed the pull the stars have with “youngsters,” employing variations of slang used by India’s youth. Specific political positions aside, imagine an analog where Joe Biden tags Jason Momoa asking, “what’s the tea?

Kaushal popularized the phrase “how’s the josh?” in a film called Surgical Strike from 2016, and it has since gone viral and become something of a cultural phenomenon.

With around 100 million young people eligible to vote for the first time this year, securing their participation is an understandable priority.

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Modi described voting as one of Indian citizens’ “prime duties” in a press release Wednesday, tasking the country with mobilizing as many people as possible to register with only about a month remaining until election day. He went as far as suggesting that those who do not vote are subjected to “great anguish.

This year’s elections come against a background of rising tension between India and Pakistan, two nuclear-armed neighbors on the brink of war since the beginning of the year.

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