Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been exploring the wilderness with survivalist Bear Grylls on his survival travelogue for the Discovery Channel, Man VS Wild. Netflix India has released the special episode, with the following brief synopsis on YouTube, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi braves the Ramganga river in a make-shift coracle as his adventure with Bear Grylls and the wild comes to an end.” The YouTube video shows PM Modi following Bear Grylls as he is taking him to his helicopter’s pickup point downstream. Bear reveals that the two will be using a raft, made of a lot reeds, for the final journey but also that he hasn’t tested the raft for safety and points out tiger tracks around them.
This is followed by the two embarking on the raft and drifting along the river as it rains, and Bear comments on the cold weather and being nervous. However, PM Modi reveals that his childhood in the Himalayas was similar to this experience. Bear also declares that the Indian Prime Minister has been “a great sport.”
Bear Grylls has had other celebrity guests on his show before, including former US President Barack Obama. The episode with PM Modi was shot in Jim Corbett National Park in Uttarakhand, India. During the episode, when Bear asked Modi about nervousness, the PM had revealed that he had “never experienced such fears." He further said, "I'm unable to explain it to people what nervousness is and how to deal with it because my in-built temperament is very positive. I see positivity in everything. And because of that reason, I am never disappointed." Chitra Ramaswamy, a reviewer in The Guardian, called the special episode a “monstrous propaganda stunt” and “the most tasteless TV ever.” However, it broke several viewership records for Discovery, with the original airing recording 6.9 million impressions and 400 million viewing minutes.