*President Barack Obama’s three-day India visit which concluded Monday boosted viewership for both English and Hindi news channels in the country, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
Per research data from Audience Measurement and Analytics Ltd., the prime-time market share of Hindi news channels rose 25% on Sunday Nov. 7 compared to the previous Sunday, while viewership of English news channels went up by 44% in the top six metropolitan areas for the same age group.
The non-stop coverage of President Obama and wife Michelle’s first state visit to India had been building up days before his arrival in Mumbai on Saturday afternoon. [Watch Obama’s arrival speech below.]
On Sunday night, an official dinner for the Obamas was hosted in Delhi by prime minister Manmohan Singh, where select guests included leading public figures and Bollywood celebrities. Among those present were superstar Aamir Khan, veteran actress Shabana Azmi and her husband screenwriter and poet Javed Akhtar.
“President Obama said he has heard a lot about my work and my films,” Khan later told reporters, adding that Michelle Obama also said she had danced with children in Mumbai to the title song from Khan’s 2006 film Rang De Basanti. Not surprisingly, news channels constantly played footage of Michelle’s dancing skills with the media dubbing her the “dancing queen.” [Watch video below.]
At another function in Mumbai, Michelle Obama was also seen dancing with children to traditional Marathi folk music, which briefly included her husband. [See video below.]
In his address at Sunday’s official dinner, Obama joked that on their trip to India “she (Michelle) has turned into a better dancer.”
Michelle also grabbed headlines with her fashion sense, which received heavy airplay and major print coverage as well. [View photos below.]
Michelle Obama strolled with 15 schoolgirls and took turns holding each one’s hand during a field trip Monday through a museum of Indian craft work. After the tour, the group sat under a canopy of trees and shared mango juice while Mrs. Obama entertained their questions.
Fourteen-year-old Manpreet Kaur, who came by overnight train from her village in Punjab, had asked the first lady if American girls struggled like India with the issue of gender preference for men. Mrs. Obama replied that things in the U.S. had improved and that there now were as many women in universities as men.
Manpreet asked whether Mrs. Obama or the president had to apologize first after they get into a fight. “She said of course the president makes up first,” the girl recalled later, drawing giggles from the rest of the group.
President Obama left India Tuesday for Indonesia as part of his ongoing Asia tour which includes South Korea and Japan.