Bengaluru, Pravasi Bharatiya Divas: PM Narendra Modi on Sunday kicked off the 14th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas in Bengaluru on Sunday, by welcoming every one, who had travelled from far off lands and millions of people who are also connected digitally. This event was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and chief guest Prime Minister of Portugal Dr Antonio Costa.
Pravasi Bharatiya Divas event is held annually in the country on January 9 to mark the return of Mahatma Gandhi as a Pravasi from South Africa to India. It is considered to be an important convention to build a platform for engagement between Central and state governments with Overseas Indian Community.
Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is celebrated in the beautiful city Bengaluru. Prime Minister Modi, thanked the CM of Karnataka and also welcomed the excellence the Prime Minister of Portugal, the honourable minister of Malaysia and Mauritius for participating in the event.
Full text of the Modi’s speech at Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
- It is a day to celebrate to return mark the return to India of one of the greatest Pravasis It is a great pleasure for me to welcome all of you on this 14th Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas
- Thousands of people are attending this, while millions more are connected through the internet.
-This day is a celebration to mark the return to India of one of the greatest Pravasi mahatma Gandhi, this is such a festival where host is you and the guest is even yourself
-This is a festival where millions of people can meet there family or friends living abroad. Meet your family not for yourself but for all. The events main persons are all of you. Joining by all of is great thanks for me and all. Welcome to all.
- There are over 30 million overseas Indians living abroad. Their supreme is all over the world. The Indian abroad are valued not only for the number, but also for the contribution they have made to the society they live. In foreign land the Indians are role model to other people living abroad. They are not just respected for their numbers, but for the contributions they make. The Indian Diaspora have contributed their best towards progress in that country. Where ever the Indians lived they have helped in the progress of that country and also helped to be in the connection with their home country.
- For my government and for me personally engagement with the overseas Indian community has been key area of priority. I may have spoken of thousands of Indian people when I travelled abroad, USA, Qatar, UAE, China, Japan, South Korea, and Malaysia. As a result of our sustained and systematic outreach, there is a new energy, in desire to connect more and strong drive among Indian Diaspora to connect more extensively and deeply with Indian social and economic transformation. The Remittance of close to sixty nine billion dollars annually by overseas Indians makes an invaluable contribution to the Indian economy.
-There was a time when people spoke of brain drain, and I used to talk that time, when I was not the PM or CM. I used to say are only the foolish people are here only in India. But today I can say with great confidence, the way we talked of brain drain because of the present government Initiative we are converting the brain drain to brain gain. This is possible because of all your contribution only and this is going to happen this is my believe.
-Nri’s have made outstanding contributions to their chosen fields, among them there a politicians of stature, scientists of repute, outstanding doctors, brilliant educationalists, economists, musicians, famous philanthropists, journalists, bankers ,engineers and lawyer and I am sorry did I mention our well know information technology professionals. Tomorrow 30 overseas Indians will receive from the president Prestigious Pravasi Bharatiya Samman award, which recognize contributions made by them in various fields their work in India and abroad.
- Friends irrespective of their background and profession, the welfare and safety of all Indians abroad are out top priority. For this we are strengthening the entire eco system of our administrative arrangements. Weather it is a loss of their Passports, need for legal advice, medical assistance, shelter or even transportation of mortal remains of India. I have directed all Indian Embassies to be proactive, to address problems of Indian nationals abroad. Our response to the need of the Indian nationals oversees, is defined by accessibility, sensitivity, speed and promptness. 24/7 help lines by Indian Embassies, Open house meeting with Indian nations, counselors camps, twitter seva for passport services and use of social media platform for immediate access. Are some of the major’s that we have put in place to convey a clear message that we are there for you when you need us.
We don’t see the color of the Passport we bond our self by blood.
In Institution of distress faced by Indian nationals we have reached out to ensure safety, rescue and repatriation. Our external affairs minister Srimati Sushma Swaraj Jee, has been particularly been proactive and prompt in reaching out the distress Indians living out abroad through social media. Under Operation sankat Mochan in July 2016 we evacuated 150 national from South Sudan within 48 hours. Our aim is that for every Indians abroad India should not be far from India.
For those workers who seek economic opportunities abroad, our effort is to provide maximum facilitation and ensure least inconvenience our moto is go in safety, go with learning and go with confidence.
About 6 lakhs engineers, emigrants have been granted emigrant clearance online for oversees employment through registered requirement agents, online registration of foreign
-Will launch skill development programme, Pravasi Kaushal Vikas Yojna for Indian youth who seek employment overseas, I urge PIO card holders to convert their PIO (Persons of Indian Origin) cards into OCI (Overseas Citizen of India) cards. Starting with Mauritius, we are working to put in place procedures so that descendants of Girmitiyas could become eligible for OCI Cards
We remain committed to addressing similar difficulties of PIOs in Fiji, Reunion Islands, Suriname, Guyana and other Caribbean States. Indians have been abroad for many generations now…. I complement the way they have adjusted to make the best of both cultures… They make us proud.
I welcome all young Pravasis… You must stay connected with India and return over and over again. This is your home. We wish to establish closer ties with the young overseas Indians
For me FDI has two definitions. One is 'Foreign Direct Investment' and the other is 'First Develop India'. You all must have seen and heard that we have taken action against corruption and black money…. These have been corroding our system from within…. India needed to take a stand and so we have…
We will no longer have any space for corruption and black money to exist. Our Diaspora has supported the Government's moves against corruption and black money, and I thank you all for your support.
Last year 5000 Indians participated in know India quiz. This year I want to see 50,000. Are you with me?
Know India programme started to reconnect PIOs with the country. 160 of them are here no matter where we are around the globe; it is our common cultural bond that brings us together. We have extended the deadline for PIO card conversions to OCI from 31 December 2016, until June 30, 2017 without any penalty.
From 1st of January this year, beginning with Delhi & Bengaluru, we have set up special counters at immigration points for OCI cardholders. We want it to become a symbol of global migration, achievements & aspirations of the Diaspora.
A special welcome to the young Pravasi, I hope that on returning to your respective countries, you will remain connected with us. Whether knowledge, time or money, we welcome your contributions that strengthen India's partnership with overseas community.
- PM Modi concluded speech amidst slogans of 'Bharat Mata ki Jai'
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