Google India's efforts to publicise the power of its search functionality has stuck an emotional chord among Indian and Pakistani YouTube viewers. The advertisement that narrates the story of two old friends separated in 1947 coming together, thanks for the powerful search and social connect options that Google provides, was first posted on Nov 13. The advertisement has since gone viral and grossed 986,248 views on last count, along with innumerable Facebook posts and tweets.
Partitions divide countries, friendships find a way (Screenshot of Google India YouTube video)
The pangs of India-Pakistan partition are still fresh in the minds of a generation not too familiar with the power of network that Google provides.
"The India-Pakistan partition in 1947 separated many friends and families overnight. A granddaughter in India decides to surprise her grandfather on his birthday by reuniting him with his childhood friend (who is now in Pakistan) after over 6 decades of separation, with a little help from Google Search," says a note tagged to the video.
The three-and-a-half minute commercial begins with a young Indian girl, Suman, listening to her grandfather, Baldev, who narrates memories of his childhood in Lahore, (now in Pakistan). He tells his granddaughter of Yousuf, his close friend, long separated as a result of the partition.
Tears running down his eyes, he tells his granddaughter how the partition of India and Pakistan divided not only two nations but friends and families. He moved on to India, and his closest friend Yousuf, stayed back in Pakistan.
Baldev portrays to his granddaughter the scenes of Lahore where the two spent their childhood. He tells her how they used to steal 'jhajariyas' (sweets) from Yousuf's sweet shop.
Disturbed by the tales her grandfather narrates and distressed by him missing a childhood friend, Suman runs couple of random searches on Google to find the Lahore of her grandfather's memories.
Suman searches the locales in Lahore as narrated by her grandfather and finds Mochi Gate and the sweet shop, and connects with Yousuf's grandson via Google+.
Suman then invites Yousuf to India, who accepts it and surprises his long-lost friend on his birthday.
At a time when governments in both countries continue to be suspicious of each other's intent, the Google video comes as a welcome relief. Only if the visa regime between both the countries was as easy as Google search.