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Modi says India at forefront of mitigation of global challenges
New Delhi, January 9, 2021
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said India was always at the forefront of mitigation of global challenges and pointed out that the country's lead in the fight against colonialism and terrorism gave strength to the world to face these menaces.
Inaugurating the 16th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) Convention -- the government's flagship event for the Indian diaspora, he noted, in this regard, India's role in dealing with the Y2K crisis and the strides made by the Indian pharmaceutical industry.
Modi praised overseas Indians for their role during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in their respective countries. He said that, during his discussions with Heads of State, he always felt pride in the overseas Indians. He said the Heads of States praised Indians in their countries for their contribution as doctors, paramedics and in other areas. He said India's capabilities had always benefited humanity.
According to him, much of the credit for the world's trust in India, its food, fashion, family values and business values went to overseas Indians. He said their conduct had created an interest in Indian ways and values.
The Prime Minister said that, as India moved ahead with the goal of "Aatmanirbhar Bharat" (Self-reliant India), the overseas Indians had a major role to play as their use of Made in India products would create more confidence in Indian products.
He spoke at length about India's response to the COVID-19 pandemic and said that, globally, there was no other example of this kind of "democratic unity against the virus".
Despite dependence in critical things like PPE kits, masks, ventilators or testing kits, India developed its capabilities not only to become self-reliant but started exporting many things. Today, India is among the countries with the least fatality rate and fastest recovery rate. As pharmacy of the world, India is helping the world and entire world is looking at India as the country prepares to embark upon the largest vaccination programme in the world with two Indigenously developed vaccines, he said.
The Prime Minister outlined the progress made by the country in reining in corruption through direct benefit transfer (DBT) which came in for global praise during the pandemic period. Similarly, empowerment of the poor and strides in the field of renewable energy are bringing laurels to the country.
He pointed out that today’s India’s space programme, tech start-up ecosystem, its "unicorns" are subverting the age-old narrative of India’s illiteracy. He invited the overseas Indians to take advantage of the reforms undertaken during the recent months in areas ranging from education to enterprise. He specially mentioned Production Linked Subsidies Scheme to popularize manufacturing in this regard.
Modi assured the diaspora of all support from their motherland. He mentioned Vande Bharat Mission in which more than 45 lakh stranded Indians were flown home during the pandemic, when international flights were grounded.
He cited initiatives such as "Skilled Workers Arrival Database for Employment Support" (SWADES) for returning immigrants from Gulf and other area. He also talked about Global Pravasi Rishta portal for better connectivity and communication with overseas Indians.
The Prime Minister thanked Suriname President Chandrikapersad Santokhi for his keynote address. He expressed hope to meet him soon. He also congratulated the winners of Pravasi Bhartiya Samman and winners of the quiz competition.
He asked the diaspora to participate in the celebration of 75th anniversary of the country’s freedom. He asked the members of the diaspora and people in Indian Missions world over to prepare a portal, a digital platform where contribution of the Pravasi Bhartiyas in the freedom struggle of India can be documented.