Connecting with diaspora youth for transforming India

Of the diaspora youth and start-up ecosystems

Business & Politics


News - India & You

January 8, 2017

/ By / Bengaluru

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Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD), which has become a key rendezvous for the Indian diaspora, has flown into its 14th edition and on the first day focussed on the diaspora youth with a view to redefine engagement between India and millions of people of Indian origin in the world.

The first day of the 14th edition of Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) Convention 2017 on January 7 in Bengaluru welcomed thousands of delegates, mainly the youth diaspora, with a powerful cultural performance by a local dance troupe to get people ready for an eventful day.

The PBD aims to provide a platform to overseas Indians to engage with the government about their issues of concern, to explore opportunities for investment in India and contribution to the country of their origin.The event is celebrated every alternate year between January 7-9 to strengthen the engagement of the overseas Indian community with the government, reconnect them with their roots and celebrate their achievements and contributions.

PBD 2017 event kicked off on Saturday with Vijay Goel, Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports and General V.K. Singh, Minister of State for External Affairs, inaugurating the event.

Chaired by Vijay Goel, the inaugural session began with discussions about the role of youth in transforming the society and India’s potential to play the role of a ‘Vishwa Guru’ (Global Guru) again.

“India can once again become a vishwa guru, a superpower and have the potential to become a spiritual and cultural hub,’’ said Michael Ashwin Adhin, Vice President of Latin American nation, Suriname, during his inaugural address.

“Talent, technology, training and team work are the basic assets of any nation and India has them in abundance. The Indian diaspora has transformed the world around wherever it is present and the country offers limitless opportunities to the world,’’ added General Singh.

The first plenary session focussed on nurturing India’s young ambassadors and reaching out to the Indian students abroad and NRIs and OCI students in India, which was chaired by Prakash Javadekar, Indian Minister of Human Resource Development. The panel and speakers addressed the problems and queries of the diaspora and also invited their insights and feedback on various issues like education and policies for the diaspora in India. Javadekar also provided his personal contact details to the Indian diaspora to allow them get in touch with him directly in order that he can address their queries personally and more effectively.

Informing about the various educational schemes and scholarships of the Indian government for the diaspora youth, Dnyaneshwar Mulay, Secretary, MEA, said, “Out of the 150 scholarships for Indian diaspora given by us, 50 are reserved for students whose parents work in the Gulf countries.’’

The second plenary session aimed at discussing the start up initiatives and innovations which have had a strong social impact in India, while the third session aimed at fuelling growth through disruptive innovations and the start up eco system in Karnataka.

A colourful end to the day was assured by a cultural programme organised by the Government of Karnataka and artists mesmerised the viewers in their vibrant costumes and traditional dance, music and art forms.

The main convention will be inaugurated on Sunday, the second day of PBD, which will be opened by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and chief guest of the event, Prime Minister of Portugal, Dr Antonio Costa.

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