The Prime Minister’s weekend stay in San Jose is a “tech- startup-energy-diaspora” oriented visit, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup said after Modi reached the innovation and entrepreneur hub of the world yesterday.
The event is being projected as one of the exciting events in Minister Modi’s five-day visit to the United States.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived at Facebook headquarters to address Townhall Q&A with Mark Zuckerberg in Menlo Park, California.
“We must bridge the digital divide and promote digital literacy in the same way that we seek to ensure general literacy“, Modi said, according to prepared remarks.
Instead, Zuckerberg praised Modi’s efforts with Digital India, the Indian government’s program to help rural areas of India get access to the Internet.
“We’ve received more than 40,000 questions for this town-hall”, Zuckerberg said. PM Modi thereafter responded to various questions asked of him ranging from economy to his mother.
“What she must have gone through… and that’s not just the case with Narendra Modi“. He’d gone because the company had hit a rough patch and competitors were trying to buy it. Apple cofounder Steve Jobs told him to go to a temple in India to help reconnect with his vision for the company. “I salute your spirit, I salute what you have done, and I thank you for it”.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is an avid user of the social media, today said from Facebook headquarters that it has huge strengths and benefits which can help governments take corrective steps if any wrong decision is taken. In China, the social network is a bit different.
Google will be working with Indian Railways and RailTel on the initiative.
Facebook has continually rebuffed those claims and Zuckerberg has vocally defended the initiative, saying that the limited nature of Internet.org is a practicality. “The presence of that, motivation and Indians coming online at an unprecedented scale, was very clear to me that this is a once in a life time opportunity”, he said, adding that there is evidence of this all around.
“My father is no more and I have my mother who is over 90 years old but still does everything herself”. Best of all, the service will be free to start, with the long-term goal of making it self-sustainable to allow for expansion to more stations and other places, with RailTel and more partners, in the future.
Modi also met with Apple CEO Tim Cook and other top chief executives including Satya Nadella of Microsoft and Sundar Pichai of Google. He talked about his own humble beginnings, about how he had risen from a simple tea seller to become the prime minister of the world’s largest democracy.