Indians Scratching Heads Over Trump's Ad in Hindi

Trump uses a Narendra Modi slogan, with his name swapped in, in 30-second spot
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 27, 2016 11:54 AM CDT

Less than a fortnight remains before Election Day, and Donald Trump is attempting an 11th-hour outreach to an entirely new demographic: Indian-Americans, reports the Washington Post. And so he's released a TV ad in which he attempts to speak Hindi (with a New York accent, the Post notes), swapping his name into a slogan used by Indian PM Narendra Modi during his own 2014 campaign. The 30-second ad kicks off with a Diwali greeting, followed by an abruptly edited score and clips from a Trump speech he gave to Indian-Americans in New Jersey on Oct. 15. In that speech, he promises the US will be a "true friend" to the "Indian and Hindu community" and help it defeat "radical Islamic terrorism." "We love the Hindus! We love India!" he proclaims.

Then, his new catchphrase as he speaks directly to viewers: "Ab ki baar, Trump sarkaar" ("this time, a Trump government"). As for reaction from Delhi residents, the BBC found that Trump "still has some work to do" in wooing Indians. One commenter on the street said he was "disgusted" by Trump's appeal to only the Hindu community when "Muslims, Sikhs, and Christians also live in this country" and noted he hoped "Americans will be smart enough to not vote this guy into power." A female respondent said, "He is not a friend of India," adding his speech seems "rehearsed" and that he appears to be a "man of contradictions." "He first berates immigrants and then tries to woo Indian-Americans," she said. (A Hindu nationalist party had a special surprise for Donald on his 70th birthday.)

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