The High Commission of India, Canberra celebrated Pravasi Bharatiya Divas on 9th January 2017. About 100 People from the Indian Community in ACT attended the function. Speaking on the occasion, High Commissioner Dr. Ajay M.Gondane encouraged those present to work to strengthen India-Australia relations. Emphasizing on the importance of the contribution of the Diaspora to India, Dr. Gondane said that cohorts of people in different professions such as education, health, academics etc could discuss issues relating to India and send their suggestions. Reiterating that the High Commission and its staff were committed to the well-being of the Diaspora, he said the doors of the High Commission and India House were always open to them. He highlighted the importance of the interchange of ideas.
Distinguished members of the Indian community spoke on different aspects of India-Australia relations and encouraged those present to excel in their chosen fields and contribute to strengthening relations between both countries. Prof Jagadish spoke about the numerous nanotech applications in fields like disease control and reduction of water pollution. Prof Jha spoke about the symbiotic relationship between the Indian and Australian economies and how cooperation could be enhanced in the economic field.
Mr. Subhash Dang spoke on enhancing Defence Cooperation between India and Australia. Mr. Ramesh Malik spoke on the problems being faced by members of the Indian community and measures that could be taken to alleviate them. Student, Mr. Dominic spoke about Higher Education in Australia and the experience of Indian students in it. Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) is celebrated on 9th January every year to mark the contribution of Overseas Indian community in the development of India. January 9 was chosen as the day to celebrate this occasion since it was on this day in 1915 that Mahatma Gandhi, the greatest Pravasi, returned to India from South Africa, led India’s freedom struggle and changed the lives of Indians forever.
PBD conventions held every year since 2003, provide a platform to the overseas Indian community to engage with the government in mutually beneficial activities. These conventions are also very useful in networking among the overseas Indian community residing in various parts of the world and enable them to share their experiences in various fields.