Pravasi Bharatiya Divas: Bengaluru to host the largest convergence of Indian Diaspora

The 14th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, the largest gathering of Indian diaspora to take place from tomorrow in Bengaluru

Indian Diaspora in US, VOA

Bengaluru, January 6, 2017: The IT capital of India is all set to host what is believed to be the largest convergence of Indian diaspora, with more than 6,000 delegates from across the world to confirming their registration to Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD)convention which begins tomorrow.

This is the 14th time the three-day PBD event will take place at the Bangalore International Exhibition Center on the city outskirts with an agenda to provide a stage to overseas Indians to engage with the Government and the authorities on topics of concern to the diaspora and to find new opportunities for investment in India and contribution to the nation of their origin.

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The event also supplies an opportunity to the overseas Indians to connect with other overseas Indians living in different parts of the world.

The convention is being held biennially for the first time instead of earlier annual versions. This will aim at defining India’s strong connections with its 3.12 crore large diaspora in versatile spheres, including start-ups, innovation, education, tourism and others.

The organisers have already confirmed a sum of 6,346 registrations for PBD 2017 and more than 1500 NRIs and 400 floating NRIs will take part in the event. Youth Pravasi Bharatiya Divas with its main focus on innovations and start-ups will be held on January 7.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to deliver the keynote address on January 8. On the same day there will be a session where Chief Ministers from eight states will participate.

The conclave will also host cultural programmes with more than 240 artists performing. According to the schedules, President Pranab Mukherjee will be conferring Pravasi Bharatiya Samman awards on January 9.

Portugal’s Indian origin Prime Minister, Antonio Costa will be the Chief Guest at the PBD. 36-year-old Vice-President of Suriname Michael Ashwin Satyandre Adhin will be the Special Guest at the Youth PBD.

PBD 2017 has made a list of its objectives such as defining the engagement and inter-networking with the Indian diaspora, to strengthen diaspora engagement and provide a platform for connecting and communicating with the diaspora, to realise their contribution to India and know their expectations and concerns and to deepen engagement with young Diasporas to help them be more aware about their roots.

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The organisers along with the state administration  have made Massive security and traffic arrangements by for the smooth conduct of this big event.

The latest torrent of economic reforms, including overhaul of indirect taxes through proposed GST will be projected by the Government significantly at this convention, that will be attended by a number of Union Ministers, officials mentioned.
The PBD was launched by the Vajpayee Government in 2003 to improve India’s engagement with its diaspora and the congregation of NRIs and People of Indian origins had continued this program as an yearly event till 2015. Last year, the Government decided to make it a biennial event.

January 9 is the main day of PBD as it was on this day in 1915 that Mahatma Gandhi, the “greatest Pravasi”, came back to India from South Africa and paved the way of India’s freedom struggle.

Issues up for discussions at the plenary sessions include – realising India’s development vision, joining forces with diaspora to promote tourism in the country and India as an international health and wellness hub.

The convention also has provisions for business-to-business meetings.

Karnataka will have a session on startup eco-system and on inter-state investment opportunities.

Industrial Tours will be freely sponsored for PBD delegates by the state government, which will also offer sightseeing tours at special rates for the participants.

– prepared by Durba Mandal of NewsGram. Twitter: @dubumerang