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IIFA goes to America; Deepika, Priyanka and Hrithik to perform

The International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) Awards, regarded by many as one of the biggest awards show in Bollywood, is being held in the US for the first time in Tampa, Florida, today.

"This year, Bollywood, its glittering stars and its legions of fans, have come to Tampa," National Public Radio (NPR) reported noting, "At nearly all of the events held this week in downtown Tampa, the soundtrack has been throbbing Indian pop.

"At an outdoor dance concert, several thousand people - mostly Indian-Americans - gathered at a park on Tampa's waterfront. DJs provided the music and there were food vendors, families on blankets and even a flash mob courtesy of a couple of dozen young people breaking out into a choreographed dance routine," NPR said.

In the past, the IIFA have been held in international cities like Bangkok, Amsterdam and Singapore. But "they wanted to introduce the Bollywood brand to the United States," Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn told NPR.

"It had never been here before, so they picked a city where there's a big Indian-American community, with the biggest media market in the state of Florida. So it made sense for a lot of reasons, and one thing we know how to do is put on a big show. This is nothing but glitz and glam and lights and music and beautiful people," Buckhorn added.

Big Bollywood stars including Hrithik Rishan, Deepika Padukone, Priyanka Chopra, Madhuri Dixit, Anil Kapoor etc will perform tonight. "Congratulations to all the people of Tampa Bay. Tampa Bay, we love you, you're the best," Anil said to excited fans.