The magical, mysterious hands behind Namaste Trump event

Faceless members of little-known Donald Trump Nagarik Abhivadan Samiti worked successfully to streamline security, traffic and audience at event

Prime Minister Narendra Modi waves at the crowd as US President Donald Trump looks on during the 'Namaste Trump' event, at Motera Stadium, in Ahmedabad. Photo: PTI

If there was an award for the most efficient organisation that works like a charm on governments, the award for 2020 would undoubtedly go to the Donald Trump Nagarik Abhivadan Samiti, the organisation credited with arranging for the US president’s India visit.

The way the Centre, the Gujarat government and the municipal corporation of Ahmedabad worked on a mission mode to make the “Namaste Trump” event a mega success was unprecedented, making people wonder why it was not done to redress everyday civic troubles of the public.

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Purely in terms of mobilisation, coordination and implementation, the little-known Donald Trump Nagarik Abhivadan Samiti got the kind of support from the government which the common man can only dream of.

Although who the office bearers of this organisation are is still a mystery, that powerful were behind it became evident from the night-long cleaning of roads and deployment of police teams who patiently ushered in thousands of people into the Motera Cricket Stadium on Monday (February 24).

Do we normally witness such a smooth operation of events? Many a time we even see ministers and MPs lamenting their inability to do things that the public demands.

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Therefore, it was interesting to see thousands of people lining up to cheer the Trump-Modi roadshow, while enjoying the performance of cultural programmes in the backdrop, without any disturbance. Ditto for the way thousands streamed in and out of the “Namaste Trump” event.

Parking arrangements were spot on and the public was highly cooperative, knowing clearly where to go and where not to go. Not a soul complained about extended working hours. On the contrary, volunteers clocked in in the early hours and worked till late night, ticking off tasks one by one.

In a way, it was Chinese-style clinical performance. No protests were anywhere in sight, except the typical Gujarati whining over expenditure.

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Can the Union government, any state government or municipal authority manage a big event like this? The answer lies in the counter question of why not. Since we are an aspiring superpower, there should be no excuses for not managing development, progress, economy, infrastructure, health, education and civic issues with sufficient space for innovation, democracy and equality.

If an infant like Donald Trump Nagarik Abhivadan Samiti can run a “Namaste Trump” marathon, why not India as a whole? If only the public carried as much weight as the faceless “Samiti” champions, at least basics can be taken care of. Some food for thought over Dhokla and Wagh Bakri tea.

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