(This commentary reflects the thoughts of the author. It does not reflect anyone else’s opinion, and does not necessarily reflect the views of Thomson Reuters Corp.)
During Gujarat’s elections last year, incumbent Chief Minister Narendra Modi used 3D technology to appear at more than one political rally simultaneously. Now re-elected, the man has increased his omnipresence, if such a thing is possible, with help from the media.
On April 8, Modi addressed the women’s wing of Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry. The same evening, he was at Network18’s summit outlining his vision for India. The next day, Modi addressed businessmen in Kolkata, West Bengal. Later in the day, he delivered a fiery speech to his party people. All of these appearances got plenty of TV coverage, website analysis and Twitter attention.
Overexposure can be harmful at times. The media bombardment during the BJP’s India Shining campaign in 2004 is one example. When the election results were out, it appeared people got tired of the campaign being in their face all the time.
“Modi is made for media at the moment; it’s an incestuous relationship where both are feeding off each other… but yes, there is a danger of the ‘novelty’ factor wearing off if he speaks virtually day in and day out,” said Rajdeep Sardesai, editor-in-chief of the IBN18 Network.