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PIO's meet to precede Diaspora Day

The two-day Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin meet will be held in Hyderabad from January 5.

india Updated: Jan 05, 2006 21:24 IST

A two-day conference of the Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) will be held here Jan 5-6 ahead of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Jan 7-9.

With the theme "Global Indian Diaspora: Today and Tomorrow", the conference will also honour five prominent people of Indian origin with Pravasi Bharatiya Community Service Awards.

"We at GOPIO believe that the NRIs/PIOs have contributed significantly to the countries of their adoption as well as to India, and have added a special glitter to the resurgence of India," said GOPIO president Inder Singh in a press statement.

The winners of the Pravasi Bharatiya Community Service Awards are Diljit S. Rana of Ireland; B.R. Shetty of the New Medical Centre, Abu Dhabi; Sudha Acharya, executive director of the South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS); and Fijian MP Ganesh Chand, a former planning minister. A special recognition award will be presented to Pavan Kumar Darisi of the World Arya Vysya Mahasabha.

Andhra Pradesh Governor Sushil Kumar Shinde will present the awards.

Prior to the conference inauguration Jan 5, a GOPIO session will hear reports on NRI/PIO issues from different countries with a large PIO population, followed by a session on "Mobilisation of Indian Diaspora Resources for Common Goal".

The first session will be devoted to the mobilisation of the global NRI/PIO communities and resources for political, social and economic goals including developmental, philanthropic and educational activities of the NRI/PIO communities as well as India.

Speakers include former NRI commissioner and former external affairs secretary J.C. Sharma, Rajendra Prasad of New Zealand, University of Guyana pro-vice chancellor Prem Misir, Mohan Gautam of The Netherlands, Fijian MP Ganesh Chand and Arjun Daluvoy of the US.

GOPIO chairman Thomas Abraham and Chandrashekhar Bhat, director of the Indian Diaspora Institute at the University of Hyderabad, will be the session chair and co-chair respectively.

Parmatma Saran of New York and Madhav Nalapat of India will speak on the theme of the conference on the second day. GOPIO secretary general Ashook Ramsaran will chair the session.

This will be followed by a session titled "Indian Diaspora: Opportunities in Business, Technology and Investments". The speakers will be B.R. Shetty of Abu Dhabi; Koosum Kalyan, business development manager/Africa exploration and production, Shell International Petroleum Company Ltd.; Yesu Persaud, executive vice president of GOPIO International; Sudhir Parekh, president, Federation of Indian Associations, New York; Krishna R. Dronamraju of Houston; and V. Narayanan of Chennai.

Since its inception in 1989, GOPIO has been organising conferences and conventions in different parts of the world to mobilise the global NRI/PIO community. In 2004-5 alone, GOPIO organised five international conferences. The Hyderabad conference is another in the series.