Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not proved to be a leader with gifted oratorical skills but also one with a knack of playing the drum whenever he gets a chance.
Modi's latest show of beating the drum with Tanzian President John Magufuli during his daylong visit to Dar-es-Salam, the African country's largest city, on Sunday (July 10) is an addition to the growing list of instances where he took up the drumsticks. The Opposition has not spared the prime minister for doing so but he has not felt perturbed.
Modi's first show with the drumsticks came in Tokyo in Sept 2014
The prime minister's drumming skills first drew attention of the public during his visit to Japan in September 2014, one of his early trips abroad after taking over the reins of power. It was during that visit when Tata Consultancy Services CEO N Chandrasekharan had invited Modi to try his hand at theTaiko drums after the professional players had finished. The PM did not disappoint anybody and played the instrument with ease and even faster. The audience burst into applause after Modi finished with his exhibition.
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi had taken a strong dig at the instance at hom then, saying the PM was busy playing the drums while India reeled under power crisis and soaring vegetable prices.
Modi beat the drum during an election rally in Assam in Feb 2016
The PM was found beating the drums in the north-east a couple of times thereafter. In February this year, he beat a Maadol---a form of tribal drum, along with former Union minister and currently Assam's Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal at a public rally in Moran in Dibrugarh district of Assam ahead of the state's election. The BJP-led alliance won the election to form the first saffron government in the state since Independence.
Modi then played the drum in Meghalaya in May 2016
Modi's third instance of playing the drums came in May. On that occasion, the PM took up the sticks to try hand at the traditional Khasi drum in Meghalaya---also in the north-east. Accompanied by the tribals, Modi visited the Khasi Heritage Village to get the first-hand knowledge of the rich cultural and traditional heritage of the Khasi-Jaintia tribe.