PM Narendra Modi reached out to the young NRIs by calling them a valuable partner in the journey of development as he delivered the keynote address at the 14th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas in Bengaluru.
Catch the highlights here:
– Remittance of close to 69 billion dollars annually by overseas Indians makes an invaluable contribution to the Indian economy. We want to turn ‘brain-drain’ into ‘brain-gain’ and your support in this is very important.
– NRIs and PIO have made outstanding contributions. Among them are politicians of great stature, scientists of repute, outstanding doctors, brilliant educationists, economists, journalists, musicians, engineers, bankers and did I mention our well-known technology professionals.
– 30 million Indians abroad are valued not just for strength in numbers, but respected for contributions to India and countries where they live. The Indian diaspora represents the best of Indian culture, ethos and values.
– I have directed the embassies to be pro-active towards needs and problems of the Indian community abroad. Security of all Indians abroad is top priority. We don’t believe in looking at the color of the passport, we believe in blood relations.
– The government will launch skill development program, Pravasi Kaushal Vikas Yojna for Indian youth who seek employment overseas. I would again encourage all PIO Card holders to convert their PIO Cards to OCI Cards.
– From 1st of January this year, beginning with Delhi and Bengaluru, we have set up special counters at immigration points for OCI cardholders.
– The government’s effort is to provide maximum facilitation and ensure least inconvenience to those workers who seek economic opportunities abroad.
– Starting with Mauritius, the government is working to put in place procedures so that descendants of various Indian communities could become eligible for OCI cards, by addressing the difficulties of PIOs in Fiji, Reunion Islands, Suriname, Guyana and other Caribbean States.
– Whether knowledge, time or money, we welcome your contributions that strengthen India’s partnership with overseas community
– The diaspora can contribute to India by sparing their time and energy on implementing our flagship programmes and stay connected.
– 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.
– Brain drain has been considered a loss for the country as Indians went abroad seeking jobs and better life. But for me and my government, such a movement is not a brain drain but brain gain as they can help us in the development.
– The government has undertaken a big responsibilty in fighting black money and corruption. Black money and corruption have gradually made our polity, economy, society and the country hollow. It is unfortunate that there are some political worshippers of black money who term our actions against it as anti-people.
– 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? No matter where we are around the globe, it is our common cultural bond that brings us together.
– Know India programme started to reconnect PIOs with the country. 160 of them are here.