PM invites NRIs to return home
"In the past few years we have already experienced what has been called a 'reverse brain-drain'. I would prefer to call this 'brain gain' or, indeed, a meeting of minds," the PM said during his integration with prominent members of the Indian-American community. Prime Minister Singh highlighted the 'Five Es - economy, energy, environment, education and empowerment' - forms a critical part of the "next phase" of the relationship between the two countries.
"Let me take this opportunity to extend an invitation to all Indian Americans and non-resident Indians who wish to return home to India in one capacity or another," said Singh. The Prime Minister further noted that Indian-Americans no longer had to make a choice about whether to work in India or America. "Modern technology and our flexible policies have opened possibilities of working in both places," he noted.
Singh noted that both nations could be described with metaphors like 'salad bowl', 'melting pot', 'rainbow' and shared values and interests would make it easier for Indians and Americans to work together. "This is what makes it easy for Indians to adapt themselves to the U.S. and, dare I say, for Americans to adapt themselves to India," he said. "I hope you will be the bridge that will continue to connect our two nations and societies."
Singh described his visit as "stimulating" and "fruitful" while laying out the five Es that would take their relations forward over and above the existing agenda of defence, security and counter-terrorism. The Prime Minister also underlined that the relationship between India and the U.S. was not born out of "crisis" but carried the potential of being mutually beneficial, which made it long-lasting.
"Our relationship is not born out of a crisis or any one concern; nor does it exist in the context of any other relationship," the PM said. "It derives its vitality from recognition of the enormous potential for mutually beneficial cooperation." A prominent Indian-American, who has been here for 42 years and now heads the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin, told PTI that the community viewed the Prime Minister's trip as a historical benchmark in Indo-U.S. relations.
"Let me take this opportunity to extend an invitation to all Indian Americans and non-resident Indians who wish to return home to India in one capacity or another," Singh said at the event on the evening before he leaves Washington after being hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama in the First State Visit of his administration.
A noted lawyer and Senior Policy Adviser in the Obama administration, Preeta Bansal, described Singh's visit as a "success". "These State visits are about building personal relationships and it is these relations that are invaluable." Also, the Director of Policy in the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Rajen S Anand, noted that out of the several State Dinners that he has attended in the past, the one on Tuesday was, "best in terms of decorations, entertainment and grace of the first lady."
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