Gandhinagar: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh Friday praised the contributions of the Indian diaspora, saying India is proud of them and they are an example of India’s indomitable spirit.
He addressed the final day events at the 13th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD).
Singh said that 25 million Indian diaspora live in different countries and “with your hard work, dedication and skill you have created a place for yourselves. I want to say that we are proud of you, you are an example of India’s indomitable spirit”.
“We cannot forget your immense contribution,” he said.
“Please don’t feel that we are looking only at investments from you…it is not ‘dhan ka rishta’ that we are looking, but a ‘man ka rishta’,” Singh said addressing the Pravasi Bhartiya Divas.
We are very proud of the contribution of the people of Indian origin and we cannot forget this grouping’s contribution in the India story, he said. The Home Minister also acknowledged that if any ill happens in the country, the PIOs and NRIs also feel hurt even though they are based in a different part of the world.
Calling the diaspora as ‘Swadeshi’, irrespective of the country they are residing in, Singh said that the country needs them to contribute in multiple ways on this journey of transformation that India has begun.
“We want to create a self-esteemed, self-reliant and a strong India, and cannot achieve the objective without your contribution,” Singh said.
Just like Mahatma Gandhi’s vision, the Modi government is working to have an integrated development of the country which entails equal attention to the villages, he said, appealing the diaspora to help create jobs in the rural areas.
Drawing attention towards the government’s flagship ‘Make in India’ initiative, Singh said the objective of turning India into a manufacturing powerhouse cannot be realised without active support from the NRIs and PIOs.
Indian diaspora is a “great capital” for the country which needs to be nurtured, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said on Thursday, as he sought its cooperation in transforming India which awaits them with opportunities.
Reaching out to the expatriates, Modi had recalled how once adversity, courage and urge to explore new avenues for livelihood motivated their ancestors to leave Indian shores, but now the country had “risen with great strength” where “great opportunities” awaited them.Â
The share of manufacturing currently stands at 14% of the GDP and the government is targeting to increase it to 25 to 30% in the next few years, Singh said.
“Let us pledge to create India as a super economic power, not merely an economic power,” he said, adding that this will require both domestic as well as foreign investment. The Home Minister assured that the government will strive to create a healthy democracy, working with the principle of collective wisdom and cooperation in this journey.
The newly announced NITI Aayog as a replacement for the plan panel is an effort in the same direction, where states will play an active role in the attainment of collective goals, he said. “Our federal structure is a bit different from other nations.
Our federalism isn’t competitive, but cooperative,” he said. Terming India as ‘living organism’ and not as a ‘lifeless idea’, Singh said we cannot become strong as a nation if any community or sect is left out in the process.