1. The third Pravasi bharatiya Divas (PBD) was held at Mumbai from January, 7-9, 2005. A record participation of more that 1800 diaspora delegate4s from over 62 countries and over 1300 resident delegates set the tone for the three-day conference.
2. PBD was co-organised by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA), Government of India and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
3. Hon’ble Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh inaugurated the three-day event at the SN Kohli Stadium, Mumbai. A rapt audience listened to a jugalbandi by Pandit Bhimsen Joshi and Dr. Balamuralikrishna. Mr. Jules Rattankoemar Ajodhia, Hon’ble Vice President of Suriname was the Chief Guest for PBD 2005.
4. The Hon’ble Prime Minister announced the extension of the facility of Dual Citizenship to all Overseas Indians, who migrated from India after January, 26, 1950 as long as their home countries allow dual citizenship under their local laws. He also promised that the government would simplify the application forms of citizenship for Overseas Indians and the format of the certificate of registration of overseas citizens of India.
5. This was the first time that the newly created Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs rolled out its agenda of providing services and initiatives for the Overseas Indians. Four areas were highlighted; consular, economic, social and employment services.
6. The National Centre for the Performing Arts, Mumbai played host for the Conference & Exhibition specially scheduled for the event.
7. Like at PBD 2004, this year, too, there was special focus on the younger generation of the Diaspora. A three week internship programme was attended by 29 Diaspora youth-interns from 12 countries who participated actively and enthusiastically in the organisation of the entire event. The internship programme included visits to Symbiosis Institute, Pune and historical locations in Mumbai, RBI, JNPT and Reliance Infocity.
8. A plenary session focusing on the engagement of the younger generation of the Diaspora with India was also held on Day III of the event.
9. The cultural evenings, which have been an integral part of the last two Pravasi Divas celebrations, were cancelled this time is a mark of respect for the victims of the wide spread Tsunami tragedy. The killer Tsunami caused widespread loss of life and property and many delegates after attending the Pravasi Divas, 2005, visited the affected areas in South India to help in relief and rehabilitation work. A special session on “Disaster Management & Rehabilitation: The role of the Diaspora” deliberated upon the ways to create a system for facilitating the engagement of the Diaspora in such calamities.
10. The highlight of PBD 2005 was the Conferment of Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards by the President of India, to 15 eminent Diaspora personalities.
11. The event was extensively covered by all major print publications and electronic broadcast media across the country and abroad.
12. Delegates at PBD 2005 savoured the wide variety of Indian cuisine from all regions of the country served at the five lunches and dinner during the event.
13. PBD 2005 provided a good opportunity for business networking. The sessions were business oriented and themes focussed on issues of Diaspora interest. The third PBD also provided a platform for Indian corporate and Industry leaders to explore partnerships with diaspora business across the world.
14. The delegates raised many issues concerning the Diaspora especially dual citizenship and problems of NRIs in the Gulf. With the creation of the new ministry to look into their affairs, overseas Indians expect speedy solution to their problems and a more proactive approach from the Government of India towards their concerns. The event was successful in creating a collective diasporic consciousness amongst the global Indian family and strengthening the bond between Overseas Indians and their motherland.
15. January, 9 each year has been chosen as the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) as it was on this date in 1915 that Mahatma Gandhi returned to India after almost two decades in South Africa. Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is celebrated to recognise the contribution of the Indian Diaspora in political, economic, social, academic and cultural fields.
16. On January, 9, 2003 the First PBD was held at New Delhi, and the second PBD also at New Delhi from January, 9-11, 2004.
Highlights and Achievements
- PBD 2005 – A successful endeavour in taking forward the collective task initiated at PBD 2003 & 2004 of bringing together Indian and its Diaspora and leveraging the potential offered by the global Indian family.
- Record participation of over 1800 Diaspora delegates from 62 countries and over 1300 Resident delegates.
- The extension of facility of Dual citizenship to all Overseas Indians who mmigrated after January, 26, 1950 lent credibility to the Indian Government’s effort to engage with its Diaspora.
- An extremely good mix of eminent panellists from both advanced and developing countries and equally high quality discourse in all sessions of the conference
- Diaspora delegates looked for serious trade and investment opportunities. Associations like AAPI and AAHOA are keenly exploring investment opportunities in healthcare and tourism sector in India. Malaysian delegates showed interest in power sector projects in India.
- Participation of 29 Diaspora youth interns from 12 countries for the Youth Internship Programme provided the momentum to India’s engagement with the younger generation of the Diaspora.
- A unique example of public-private partnership where FICCI and the newly-created MOIA joined hands to successfully host the event.
- The event symbolized a successful multi-ministerial effort put forward by the Government of India
- Impressive media coverage- both print and electronic reportage- largely positive and appreciative.
- Positive feedback from the delegates who appreciated the overall organisation of the event and praised the conference, the food festivals as also the invocation ceremony at the inaugural session.
Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awardees-2005
|1.||Prof Alokeranjan Dasgupta||Germany|
|2.||Shri M. Arunachalam||Hong Kong|
|3.||Dr. Sant Singh Virmani||Philippines|
|4.||Ms. Amina Cachalia||South Africa|
|5.||Shri Ahmed Kathrada||South Africa|
|6.||Sir (Dr.) J.K. Chande||Tanzania|
|7.||Shri Basdeo Panday||Trinidad & Tobago|
|8.||Shri Yusuffali M.A.||United Arab Emirates|
|9.||Lord Bhikhu Chhotalal Parekh||United Kingdom|
|10.||Shri Vikram Seth||United Kingdom|
|11.||Prof Sunil Khilnani||United States of America|
|12.||Dr. Sam Pitroda||United States of America|
|13.||Prof. Jagdish Bhagwati||United States of America|
|14.||Shri Manoj Night Shyamalan||United States of America|
|15.||Shri Vijay Singh||United States of America|