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Sinha for close ties between India, diaspora
January 09, 2003 17:31 IST
Calling for a close partnership between India and its diaspora, External Affairs Minister Yashwant Sinha on Thursday cautioned that pursuit of 'vested interests' by individuals or groups should not jeopardise interests of entire communities.
"The days of war are over. The collective good of the silent majority should be always kept in mind. Pursuit of vested interests by individuals or groups should not lead to the safety and vital economic interests of entire communities being jeopardised," he said.
Delivering the keynote address at the plenary session of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas on 'India and Diaspora -- Forging a Constructive Relationship', he stressed on the need to be attuned to the complexities of international relations.
"It needs to be kept in mind that often quiet diplomacy, backdoor intervention and collective efforts on the part of a group of countries bring better results than a sledgehammer approach," he said.
He said the diaspora has a vital role in taking the best of India to the world and in bringing the best of the world back to India.
He said both sides have to consider how to knit together individual talents and forge them into a collective will.
The India diaspora today can boast of political prowess, economic prosperity and intellectual achievements of world calibre, the minister said and added that the changed circumstances provides the basis for a new and close partnership with India.
Observing that India has completely shed its ambivalence towards its diaspora, he said there is a recognition of the important contribution made by this segment and the role it can play in advancing India's interests.
While racism and xenophobia continue to pose problems in many parts of the world, there is also a large constituency of support for ethnic diversity, he said.
The growing popularity of Indian music, dance, cinema, cuisine, religion and philosophy in different parts of the world is a good example of this phenomenon, he said.
"Within India, too, the moan of brain drain has given way to the acclaim of brain gain," he said.
The minister stressed that the diaspora should get better organised to make a bigger impact on its host communities.
He said there should be systematic efforts to bring all organisations under one roof so that they work towards a common goal.
Suggesting that the Jewish Diaspora should be emulated, he said this is a process that should primarily emerge from within the community. He asked them to do their utmost to organise themselves under a single umbrella so that their collective voice can be heard.
Pravasi Bharatiya Divas