21st century will belong to India: PM tells Pravasi Indians

Trying to convert brain drain into brain gain, the PM said
21st century will belong to India: PM tells Pravasi Indians
21st century will belong to India: PM tells Pravasi Indians
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that the government will launch a skill development programme for young Indians seeking jobs abroad.

Speaking at the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas 2017 event held in Bengaluru on Sunday, the PM also thanked overseas Indians for their support on demonetisation. He added that worshippers of black money were casting the move as “anti-people”.

He praised Indian living abroad for their hard work and described them as disciplined, law abiding and peace loving citizens, and an inspirational for all the other people.

“Though our goals, paths and objectives may be different, we all share the common emotions and sentiments of Bharatiyata. We don’t see the colour of passports, but the relations written by blood,” the Prime Minister said.

The PM said there were 30 million overseas Indians, with footprints all over the world but they were not valued just for their strength in numbers, but for the value they contributed to India and the countries in which they lived.

“Wherever they are, they see that place as their karmabhoomi (work place). but where they came from, they think of that place as their motherland,” the PM said.

“Because of the sustained systematic outreach by the government, there is a new energy in the diaspora to reconnect with India,” the PM said, adding “We are trying to convert brain drain into brain gain.”

PM Modi termed the remittance of nearly 69 billion dollars annually by overseas Indians as “invaluable contribution” to the Indian economy calling the Indian diaspora to be “valuable partners, valuable stakeholders” for the country’s economy.

The Prime Minister also said, “The welfare and safety of Indians abroad is our top priority,” and praised Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj for her protectiveness on social media.

“We are there for you when you need us,” Modi said. He also hailed the evacuation from war torn territories of South Sudan and Yemen.

“Indian embassies have been instructed to be proactive and address problems with a focus on accessibility, sensitivity, speed, and promptness,” Modi said.

The PM reiterated that overseas Indians should feel a sense of belonging irrespective of the country they live in currently.

Announcing an extended deadline for converting PIO cards into OCI cards (from December 31, 2016 to June 30, 2017), the PM said, “We have streamlined systems and introduced safeguards for those going abroad for work. With regard to girmittiya countries, aware that there have been problems in getting OCI cards for those who moved to these countries five-six generations ago.”

“Starting with Mauritius, we are introducing new procedures, document requirements that will let these people get the OCI card,” he added.

The PM also said that the Department of Science And Tech will introduce a special programme for visiting, adjunct and joint research faculty, under which overseas Indians can come and work with Indian institutions for a period of one-three months.

He concluded by expressing his confidence, saying, “21st century would be the century of India.”

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