Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the 17th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention in Indore, Madhya Pradesh with much fanfare.
PM Modi released the Commemorative Postal Stamp ‘Surakshit Jaayen, Prashikshit Jaayen’ to underline the importance of safe, legal, orderly and skilled migration. The Prime Minister also inaugurated the first-ever digital PBD Exhibition on the theme “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav – Contribution of Diaspora in Indian Freedom Struggle” to highlight the contribution of our diaspora freedom fighters in India’s Independence.
Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) Convention is the flagship event of India that provides a platform to engage and connect with the people of Indian origin and enable the diaspora to interact with each other.
The theme of this PBD Convention is ‘Diaspora: Reliable partners for India’s progress in Amrit Kaal’. Over 3,500 diaspora members from nearly 70 different countries have registered for the PBD Convention.
Addressing the gathering, PM Modi remarked that the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is taking place in all its glory after a gap of four years and highlighted the significance and joy of personal interaction.
Welcoming everyone on the occasion on behalf of 130 crore Indians, Prime Minister Modi said that the event is taking place on the land of Madhya Pradesh which is known as the heart of India and famous for the holy waters of Narmada, the greenery, the tribal culture and spirituality.
He also mentioned the recently dedicated Maha Kaal Maha Lok and hoped that dignitaries and delegates will be able to visit the sacred place.
Talking about the host city, Indore, Prime Minister Modi said Indore is a city as well as a phase,
“It is a phase that walks ahead of time while preserving its heritage.”
Prime Minister Modi remarked that the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is special in numerous ways as India completed 75 years of its independence only recently. He also informed that the first-ever digital PBD Exhibition on the theme ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ has also been organised which brings the glorious era to the fore once again.
Highlighting the significant role of Pravasi Bhartiya in the next 25 years of the journey of Amrit Kaal, the Prime Minister stated that India’s unique global vision and its role in the global order will be strengthened by them.
Speaking about the world of today, He highlighted that Indians have traversed all parts of the globe while living among different cultures and traditions and yet found ways to unlock the gates of prosperity through business partnerships.
“The feeling of pride in being the mother of democracy increases manifold when Pravasis are talked about as the most democratic, peaceful and disciplined citizens in different parts of the world”,Prime Minister Modi remarked.
Prime Minister Modi stated that he calls every Pravasi Bhartiya a national ambassador of India as they echo the voice of a powerful and capable India when the world evaluates their contributions.
“You are the Rashtradoots (national ambassadors) of India’s heritage, of Make in India, of Yoga and Ayurveda, of India’s cottage industries and handicrafts”, “At the same time, you are also the brand ambassadors of India’s millets.”
He mentioned that 2023 has been declared the International Year of Millets and appealed to everyone to take some millets products back home.
Prime Minister Modi highlighted that India is taking over the G-20 Presidency this year and the responsibility comes with a great opportunity to make the world aware of India’s past experiences to attain a sustainable future and learn from these experiences.
“G-20 is not just a diplomatic event but it should be turned into a historic event of public participation where one can witness the sentiment of ‘Atithi Devo Bhava’”, the Prime Minister said. He informed that more than 200 meetings will take place as part of the G-20 summit which will take place in different cities in India and said that it will be a great opportunity to establish meaningful connections with the delegates of many countries.
PM Modi said that today’ India has the opportunity to become not only the knowledge centre but also the skill capital of the world. He underlined the skill, values and work ethics of Indian youth. “This skill capital can become the engine of global growth”, the Prime Minister added.
He suggested that there should be a sustained effort to document the lives, the struggle and the contributions of Pravasi Bharatiyas for their respective countries through universities and research institutions. The Prime Minister said that each and every Bharatvanshi carries entire India with him or her.
“In the last 8 years, India has tried to strengthen its diaspora. It is India’s commitment today that wherever you are the country is for your interests and expectations”,he said.
Prime Minister Modi thanked the Special Guests of Honour Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali, the President of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, and, Chandrikapersad Santokhi, President of the Republic of Suriname for their remarks and suggestions.
The 17th PBD Convention holds significance as it is being organised as a physical event after a gap of four years and the first after the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. The last PBD Convention in 2021 was held virtually during the Pandemic.