President Ram Nath Kovind has said that Persons of Indian Origin, PIOs have enhanced the identity of India and of the Indian people all over the world.
Inaugurating the International Conference of PIO Parliamentarians in New Delhi on Wednesday, Mr Kovind said, PIOs have remained true to Indian culture and retained a strong and commendable bond with their roots while living thousands of miles away.
He said, if Indian cuisine and Indian films have a global market today, it is because of the diaspora which has taken them to distant lands.
The President said, Indian diaspora has climbed to appreciable heights in almost all the countries where it has found a home and it has contributed to the well-being of that country and of that society, enriching the economy and adding to intellectual wealth and local culture.
He said, members of the Indian diaspora work hard on farms in countries as far apart as Italy, Bolivia and Tanzania and they are instrumental to the tech start-up ecosystem of Silicon Valley. Mr Kovind said, the global financial centres of New York, London and Singapore would simply not be the same without the Indian diaspora.
The President said, Government of India’s engagement with PIO parliamentarians or with the wider Indian diaspora is not a transactional relationship or a zero-sum game. He said, India look upon the community and look upon PIO parliamentarians and elected and public representatives as a living bridge.
Mr Kovind said, they have a pivotal role in enhancing understanding between their countries and the country of their parents and ancestors which can help in building economic, people-to-people and strategic connections that will be of benefit to both countries.