President Kalam, Manmohan Singh to address NRI third Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2005

Mumbai, Dec. 01, 2004

President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will address a three-day conclave of non-resident Indians (NRIs) to be held here in January.

The third Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2005 is being organised from Jan 7-9 jointly by the ministry of overseas Indian affairs and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).

Suriname's vice president Jules Ajodhia will be the chief guest at the conclave and will address the inaugural session with Kalam and Manmohan Singh, said a statement here.

Overseas Indians from around 70 countries are expected to lead large delegations to Pravasi Bharatiya Divas this year, said the statement, adding over 600 delegates have already confirmed their participation.

The event will have plenary sessions with Finance Minister P. Chidambaram, Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs Jagdish Tytler, other cabinet ministers and leader of opposition L.K. Advani.

Sectoral issues will be discussed at parallel sessions on education, science and technology, healthcare, rural development, ethnic media and entertainment, non-resident Indians in Gulf, finance, and culture and tourism.

The Pravasi Bharatiya Divas will also have an "internship programme" for the overseas Indian youths to strengthen their bonds with India.

This is a platform where young students and professionals of Indian origin from different countries will gather for a three-week period," said Vivek Bharati, an advisor with FICCI.

"This year, around 40 interns will participate in organising the event and will be provided an orientation to increase their awareness of their country of origin," he added.

Some of the leading diaspora personalities who have confirmed their participation are cabinet ministers Samy Vellu of Malaysia and Shanmugaratnam of Singapore, Shashi Tharoor, Amitabha Ghosh, and Vijay Amritraj.

Organisations including Indian business chambers abroad like the Malaysian Indian Congress and the Indian Chamber of Commerce Hong Kong will lead delegations to the event.