By Hindustan Times
Russia's love affair for iconic Raj Kapoor was amply evident when the Presidential orchestra regaled visiting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at a luncheon banquet hosted by President Dmitry Medvedev at the Kremlin.
The Prime Minister and his wife Gursharan Kaur were entertained by two hit numbers from Raj Kapoor-starrer films on Friday rendered by the orchestra.
Singh and his wife were touched by the songs, whose music were composed by Shankar-Jaikishan duo, and went up to the orchestra and complimented them.
The orchestra played Main Awara Hoon from the 1951 movie Awara, which was the most popular film in the erstwhile Soviet Union, and Jeena Yahan Marna Yahan from Mera Naam Joker (1970) that has in its cast Russian actress Kseniya Ryabinkina.
Raj Kapoor and films featuring him had been a huge draw in the Soviet Union and their popularity continues unebbed in Russia too.
Indian cinema has been and continues to find many loyal enthusiasts in Russia where there are dedicated 24 hours channels which screen Hindi movies.
Bollywood continues to inspire and entertain many Russians and Raj Kapoor remains one of the biggest overseas names in Russia till date.
Russia is also inviting Indian filmmakers to Russia for shooting and opening of film institutes.
Indian producers feel it will be of great help if the Russian government created a single window facilitation.
Russia is the new muse of Indian film producers. Several movies like No Smoking, Parwana, Lucky: No Time for Love have been shot in this country.
Russians have enjoyed Indian films during the time of the former Soviet Union but Bollywood still rules the heart of many generations.
And today, Indian films are coming back, bringing with them a new modern style, based on the old traditions, according to a Russian fan of Indian films.