Registrations soar for Narendra Modi's first UAE trip

Registrations soar for Narendra Modis first UAE trip

Dubai - Over 200 buses have been arranged to ferry passengers from nearby metro stations.

By Sunita Menon, Web Editor

Published: Thu 13 Aug 2015, 1:52 PM

Last updated: Thu 13 Aug 2015, 3:33 PM

The Indian community across the UAE is upbeat in anticipation of their Prime Minister Narendra Modi's first visit to the UAE.

Online registration for participating in the public reception for Modi at the Dubai Cricket Stadium has crossed 45,000.

Despite the limited seating capacity in the stadium, those who are planning to attend the event said that they are willing to brave the heat to hear their Prime Minister address the diaspora.

There are an estimated 2.6 million Indians in the UAE and this will be the second visit of an Indian prime minister after 34 years. Late Indira Gandhi visited UAE in 1981.

Members of the Indian organizing committee said that they are making maximum efforts to ensure that event goes out smoothly.

"The online registration on our special website is constantly on the increase," said K. Kumar, convener of the organizing committee.

"All the relevant local departments have been contacted and we are working in close coordination with them. The gates will be open between 4pm and 4:30pm. Cameras and video cameras are banned. It is must to get the same ID by which they have registered online for participating in the event."

"Around 200-300 buses have been arranged to ferry passengers from the nearest metro stations to the stadium. A 35-member troupe has been especially flown in from India for a cultural performance that will be held before the PM addresses the community. This same troupe had also given a performance on Modi's official visits to Germany in April this year. Care has also been taken to station paramedics at the event site. Seating will be first-come-first-serve basis. Huge screens will be set up for those who do not manage to get inside the stadium," added Kumar.

Speaking to Khaleej Times, majority of the Indian community members said the news of Modi's visit to the UAE makes them feel proud and has brought them a sense of protection. "I am so proud that he is coming to the UAE. The moment I got to learn about his visits, I felt so protected, that yes my country cares about me. I definitely love UAE and like the security that this country provides all its residents but my country is my country. One day I will have to go back," said Manoj Tiwari, an IT professional.

Highlighting similar sentiments, Bharat who runs a business in the Bur Dubai, said: "Sunkar acche lag raha hai. Aisa lagta hai apna koi aa rah hai..(I am delighted that Modi is going to be here. It feels like someone close to us is coming to visit us."

Kasim Mohammad, a delivery man from Sharjah, will be taking a day off from work so that he will be able to go for the PM's reception. "Arrey, hamare Modi Sahab aa rah hai. Unko sunna aur dekhna banta hai hai. Hamare room mien ek ajeeb kism is lehar uthi hai. Saab wait kar rah hai unkey aaney ka..(Modi is going to be here and surely I am not going to miss it. There is a lot of enthusiasm in our accommodation on his visit)".

Security arrangements for Modi's visit

Amira Agarib

The Dubai Police has made comprehensive security arrangements for the visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Major General Abdulla Ali Al Ghaithi, Director of the Department of Protective Security and Emergency, told Khaleej Times that teams with sharpshooting skills and prowess in riding advanced motorcycles have been assembled.

Three units have been formed: One assigned for VIP protection, one will be an emergency unit that will handle security at the location, and one team will deal with arrests and be prepared to handle riot-like situations.

How many personnel are deployed will depend on the crowd and the nature of the event, he added.
Recounting how Modi has suddenly become the talk of the town for the community, Rajesh Sharma, who works as a researcher, said: "I travel by Metro and all that I heard from fellow Indians was only Modi and his visit and how they plan to go for the event. Discussions were also held on the special website and how they get themselves registered. Some of them were also passing on the website address to those who were not aware on the registration procedure."

"Irrespective of whether I get to enter the stadium or not, I will go for the event. I don't mind standing in the heat for my prime minister," said Dilip Parashar, a college student.
Modi has been invited by His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces. The Indian Prime Minister will also meet His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai during the visit.

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