President on official State visit to India –as ‘Chief Guest’ at world’s largest gathering of people of Indian origin
PRESIDENT Donald Ramotar is expected to arrive today in India, where he is scheduled to be the Chief Guest at the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD), the world’s largest annual gathering of people of Indian origin.
He is on an official six-day State visit, and is expected to hold meetings with Indian Prime Minister, Mr Narendra Modi; External Affairs Minister, Ms Sushma Swaraj and a number of other senior leaders.
The Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is being held in Gandhinagar in Gujarat, India.
“The visit will contribute to further strengthening and deepening the close bilateral relations between India and Guyana,” the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement in anticipation of the official visit.
India’s relations with Guyana are warm and cordial; the presence of a large Indian Diaspora in Guyana adds to the close relationship between the two countries, the Ministry added.
The visit is expected to contribute to further strengthening of close bilateral relations between India and Guyana, according to the Indian Government.
Presidents Ramotar and Modi had held a bilateral meeting in July last on the sidelines of the 6th BRICS-UNASUR (Union of South American Nations) meeting at Fortaleza in Brazil, in which they had reviewed bilateral relations.
Bilateral trade between India and Guyana in 2013 and 2014 stood at US$31.47M
To connect India to its vast overseas Diaspora and bring their knowledge, expertise and skills on a common platform, the PBD Convention – the flagship event of Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA), Government of India is organised from 7th to 9th January every year since 2003.
PBD is celebrated on 9th January every year to mark the contribution of the 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, and led India’s freedom struggle and changed the lives of Indians forever.
PBD conventions are being held every year since 2003. The conventions provide a platform to the overseas Indian community to engage with the government and people of the land of their ancestors for mutually beneficial activities.
The conventions have also been hailed as very useful in networking among the overseas Indian community residing in various parts of the world and to enable them to share their experiences in various fields.
During the event, individuals of exceptional merit are honoured with the prestigious Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award to appreciate their role in India’s growth. The event also provides a forum for discussing key issues concerning the Indian Diaspora.