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Are Modi’s flagship programs losing their sheen for Indian diaspora?

Indian diaspora
The Government of India’s apparent move to “shift” the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) celebration this year to NRIs living abroad, instead of making it a big annual event on January 9 in Delhi, as was the tradition, is failing to get necessary response from Indian diaspora, if what happened in Melbourne, Australia, is any indication.
Organized by the Indian Consulate General of India in Melbourne, it is learnt that just about couple of dozen non-resident Indians (NRIs) out of the “target population” of over a lakh in Victoria Province attended the function. Melbourne is the capital of Victoria.
Held on February 21, one of those who attended the “event” called it a “completely lacklustre” affair, adding, “This is just a reflection of the fact that people abroad are losing interest in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s efforts to promote his flagship programmes such as Make in India and Clean India.”
The event, said this participant, was held at the Indian consulate in Melbourne in order to “take ideas about Modi’s Make in India, Clean India and other policies, but it flopped as the total attendance was 20-25, including 4-5 panelists and the consulate staff.”
The event was organized by two NRI companies and was addressed by Manika Jain, Indian consul in Melbourne. Other penalists, who spoke on the occasion, were Vasan Srinivasan, Ravi Bhatia, Dr S Bhargawa, Dr Raj Kumar, and Dinesh Malhotra.
A letter to NRIs in Melbourne, sent by the Consulate General of India, said that the Government of India “contributions of Indian Diaspora Associations (IDAs) to its developmental initiatives and flagship projects.”
It added, “On this occasion IDAs are encouraged to put forward their creative ideas, viewpoints and reasoning for expeditious implementation of the Government of India flagship projects.”

“IDAs are also encouraged to come up and declare their creative contributions with draft details of contributions in cash, kind and intellectual inputs”, it added.

Asking Indian diaspora to “come to this event and read your written text of your creative ideas and viewpoints, and “declare your input contributions to Government of India flagship projects, if any”, it made the event open to all NRIs.

“If you wish to come with your friends, please let us know their names and native places in India. The prior information is necessary for logistical and security arrangements”, the invitation said, adding, “Also if you can circulate this event in the community also, it will be highly appreciated.”
Things reportedly did not go well elsewhere in the world elsewhere. For instance, at the High Commission of India in Sri Lanka, which celebrated Pravasi Bhartiya Divas (PBD) this year at the Indian Cultural Centre, Colombo, just about 50 NRI “prominent members” attended the event.
This was despite the fact that Minister for National Co-existence, Dialogue and Official Languages of Sri Lanka Mano Ganesan was the Chief Guest on the occasion, with YK Sinha, High Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka, speaking the “contribution” made by Indian Diaspora towards nation building in India and in their adopted countries.
While PBD events were similarly organized elsewhere in the world as well, including all major capitals such as Washington CD and London, suspension of the big event was a big surprise to policy makers as well as NRIs.
“PBD has sanctity attached to it because it marks the anniversary of the return of Mahatma Gandhi to India from South Africa”, The event as a part of the Indian’s government’s outreach towards global Indians,” reportedly said R Dayakar, a retired Indian foreign service officer.
Munish Gupta, coordinator, Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) International, reportedly said, “The cancellation of the PBD in 2016 for the first time after so many years is a big disappointment”, adding, it would slow down efforts to begin “a new chapter in India’s dialogue with the diaspora.”
This article was first published at

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This is How You Choose a Perfect Driver for Airport Transfers Melbourne

This guide would help you in finding the right person for the airport transfer services

Prefect, Driver, Airport, Transfers
Your driver needs to be both honest and dedicated to work. Pixabay

Now that you have decided to travel to your home town, you need someone to pick up since your parents don’t have a car. Alternatively, maybe you want to give a surprise to your family, and that’s why you can’t call them at the airport. This is where the services of airport transfer Melbourne come in handy.

Thousands of organisations and car drivers can help you at this time. However, before choosing anyone, you need to be aware of how you would decide on a driver. Certainly, your driver needs to be both honest and dedicated to work.

How would you recognise if the driver you choose is good enough to take you to your destination? This guide would help you in finding the right person for the airport transfer services.

Check out the website first

If you have approached a company first, you might have to be ensured of the services they provide. You can take a note of all the facilities they provide and make sure it includes choosing the driver. Even if the company doesn’t write about it, you can still call and ask the customer care service.

Prefect, Driver, Airport, Transfers
Before choosing anyone, you need to be aware of how you would decide on a driver. Pixabay

The company should be ready to share critical information about the drivers with you. For instance, you can get the basic details about their names, family, home town, address, and a little bit about experience in the field.

Find a trained driver

If you want to have a successful and safe drive, make sure that you choose the experienced and trained person to bring you to your destination. The trained driver can pass by the traffic without even you getting frustrated.

However, if the opposite were to happen, you might end up getting in an unfortunate accident where the driver will be responsible for your life. That is why making sure of the experience of the person is more than necessary. An experienced driver would ensure to monitor your flight schedule and make his plans accordingly.

Make sure that drivers have a good background and reviews

If you’re checking on the driver’s information, make sure that they have a positive past with handling customers. This is certainly important because you wouldn’t want a driver with zero driving experience and a bad past with the customers to pick you up from the airport. Cost-Effective drivers would bring about a safe journey for you.

They show you balanced politeness while driving

Prefect, Driver, Airport, Transfers
The trained driver can pass by the traffic without even you getting frustrated. Flickr

You might have seen polite dudes as drivers, but the overly polite are the ones you can stay away from. The primary reason behind this is simple: they are not as experienced as you think. When a driver knows what he is doing, he won’t let you be late for your schedule at the airport. If you’re on the run, he wouldn’t just stop and let others pass by. The chances of that are mild if you’re with an experienced driver.

Make sure that your driver stays away from intoxication

Whenever you chose a driver, you might have to consider the options of intoxication. You can’t know it before selecting the driver yourself by contacting the company you chose. However, you can see reality by meeting them right away. They may show some symptoms if they have been drinking alcohol before they could drive you to the airport.

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You can make an exception though. If the particular person hadn’t been drunk while they are escorting you, you could trust them even though they can be an avid drunker elsewhere. However, it’s your cue to make sure that the driver is good and dedicated to the job.


Choosing a Melbourne airport transfers driver is a critical job. If the company still doesn’t let you choose, you can always see how they behave while driving you to the airport. You can notice the way they sit or drive the vehicle. It is, however, better to be safe than sorry.