Narendra Modi, the Gujarat Chief Minister is the newest joinee on Google+ Hangouts, as per latest reports, making him the first Indian politician to do so. His appearance comes ahead of the assembly elections that are around the corner, and is a crucial event. Modi will be interacting with select individuals and groups of the popular video chat service on Google's social networking platform on August 31.
Those interested will have to go through a sifting process. To begin with, one will have to start following him on Google+. Then, users will have to post a question, either in a video or in a text format. Once the questions get shortlisted, the selected questioners will be invited to join Modi on Google+ Hangouts. The topic of Modi's Google+ Hangouts session will be “Strong and Glorious India long cherished by Swami Vivekananda”. The initiative is organised by Vivekananda Cell, Sports, Youth and Cultural Activities Department, Gujarat. Those interested in asking a question to CM Modi should do so before the midnight of 27 August, which is the last day for submitting the questions.
Google+ Hangouts is a popular Google Plus feature. The feature allows multiple users to join a video conference. Narendra Modi is a popular political figure in the country. His coming online to talk face-to-face with the people is certainly a first in the country. He is quite active across social networking sites too. A testimony to this fact is that he has a huge following across Twitter and Facebook, with more than 8 lakh followers on Twitter and more than 6 lakh fans on Facebook. Interestingly, he created his Google+ account only two months ago, and has already garnered a fan base of over 90,000. Elsewhere in the world, prominent figures such as US President Barack Obama and Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard have already used the feature.
Questions continue to pour in on the designated space and deal with issues pertaining to the nation.
Narendra Modi's message on his Hangouts schedule
Users will also have the option to view the interaction live on YouTube by clicking here. Commenting on the event, a post on his official blog reads, “Shri Narendra Modi has been a trend-setter for Indian Politicos be it governance, development, technology or social media presence. On 31st August 2012, a yet another example will be set by Shri Narendra Modi, when he will speak with you face-to-face! It’s the 1st time in India that any politician will connect LIVE with the people directly!”. Interested people may log in to www.narendramodi.in to post their questions. Those logging in via Twitter can post their questions with the hashtag #ModiHangout. Alternatively, they can SMS questions to the toll-free number 09227411117.
It will be interesting to see the masses interact with a political leader through the new medium.