Pravasi Bharatiya Divas was announced by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 2002 and was first celebrated on January 9, 2003. Through this program, the erstwhile prime minister aimed to build a bridge between the Indians and the Non-Resident Indians (NRIs). The country has benefitted immensely through this initiation and has helped attract the attention of many NRI’s towards their country.
Indirectly, it has also helped motivate them to invest in India which is how the foreign investments in the country have grown so rapidly in the last decade or so.
Connection of Gandhiji with Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
Every year India celebrates Pravasi Bharatiya Divas on January 9 to honour the achievements of those Indians who are now residing in foreign countries. This particular date has been chosen to celebrate this day because Mahatma Gandhi returned to India from South Africa on January 9, 1915.
After successfully carrying out a campaign of non-violence in South Africa, Gandhiji took upon himself the responsibility to free the country from the clutches of the British Empire. On this day Indian-born people who have done some fabulous work for their adopted countries are honoured and their contribution is acknowledged.
How is Pravasi Bharatiya Divas celebrated?
The celebrations are organized by the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India in collaboration with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) as well as other stakeholders. More often, the celebrations usually consist of panel discussions, seminars, and cultural programs.
Over the years, the celebrations have been successful in attracting a wide range of participants both from India and abroad including business leaders, policymakers, leading academics, and other important members from India and the NRI community.
Last time when the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the United States he especially addressed a large community of NRI’s emphasizing the importance of their investments in India and how they can help their country grow by diverting their investments towards their native country.
And Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is just the right platform to promote such discussions and efforts.