Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday morning took to tweeting in Japanese, two days before he sets off on his first >visit to Japan . Of the eight tweets posted in Japanese, he tagged two to his counterpart Shinzo Abe.
Explaining the reason for tweeting in Japanese, Mr. Modi in a separate tweet said in English, “Friends from Japan asked me to talk to the people of Japan directly in Japanese. I also thank them for helping with the translation.”
Friends from Japan asked me to talk to the people of Japan directly in Japanese. I also thank them for helping with the the translation.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) >August 28, 2014
Instead of the Prime Minister’s official Twitter handle, he used his personal handle to reach out to the Japanese in their own script.
Mr. Modi’s tweets in Japanese found immediate traction with many retweeting them and others wondering whether his account had been hacked. For the most part, the responses were from Indians and the diaspora with some Japanese joining the chatter to thank him for the effort.
日本のインドとの友情は時の試練を経てなお続いている。われわれ二国は、世界の平和と繁栄の推進に傾倒する、活気に満ちた民主主義国家である。— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) >August 28, 2014
The Prime Minister will visit Tokyo and Kyoto in what will be his first bilateral outside the sub-continent. His earlier bilateral visits have been to Bhutan and Nepal. He was to have undertaken this visit in July but, according to the Prime Minister’s Office, it had to be >rescheduled owing to the Parliament session.
私は８月３０日から日本を訪問する。印日関係を強化するこの訪問を、とても楽しみにしている。 >@AbeShinzo— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) >August 28, 2014
During his election campaign, there have been several instances when Mr. Modi began his speeches with a few words in the mother tongue of the area. And, since becoming premier he has donned local attire during his visits within the country — the latest case in point being his Leh visit earlier this month — in a throwback to the days of late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.