London: A large number of Indians throng to see the wax models of the Bollywood superstars in London`s Madame Tussauds. The officials of the Madame Tussauds said that over the years, there was a surge in the number of Indians who visited the museum.
"It is very popular. The Bollywood area is very very popular and it will continue to be so. We get a lot of people from India coming over and the Indian Diasporas is huge all over the world. So, that`s what helps," said Raj Ali, an Operations Host.
Among the prominent Bollywood stars whose wax statutes have been included in the museum are Amitabh Bachchan, Shahrukh Khan, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Hrithik Roshan. "I really liked this and I`d like to see more statues from different categories, not only sports, not only political, the people from like poor to rich and rich to poor whoever," said Kiru Barahan, visitor from Toronto, Canada.
The Bollywood wax statues have garnered huge appreciation from Indians over the years, persuading the officials to include more renowned Indian celebrities. "How do we keep it like this? Well we keep innovating and we keep on creating new celebrities and new models, which is a new opportunity for us to reach out to a new audience," added Ali.
The other prominent Indian personalities, whose wax statues draw huge crowds, are those of famous Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, freedom fighter Mahatma Gandhi and the late former Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi.
The other world leaders, whose statues were seen at the museum were of Nobel Peace prize winners such as former President of South Africa Nelson Mandela and Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama, Yaseer Arafat.
Visitors also pose next to the wax statue of German dictator, Adolf Hitler. The museum was founded by wax sculptor Marie Tussaud and has become a major tourist destination.
Marie Tussaud was born in 1761 in Strasbourg, France. She learnt the art of wax modelling from Philippe Curtius, a physician. The first wax model that she created was of Voltaire, in 1777.