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London joins Parvasi Bhartiya Divas 2016

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Mr Bhambra at the PBD event at India House in London

Acting High Commissioner Dr Virander Paul and his team pull all the strings to make the day a memorable event for the guests and attendees…. writes Kanwal Toor

Amarjeet Bhambra, Head - Indian Spiritual sciences, at the PBD event at India House in London
Amarjeet Bhambra, Head – Indian Spiritual sciences, at the PBD event at India House in London

London’s iconic India House hosted an event which was attended by who’s who of the British Indian Diaspora. The Indian High Commission organised the event to mark Parvasi Bhartiya Divas (Non-Resident Indian Day). Acting High Commissioner Dr Virander Paul and his team pull all the strings to make the day a memorable event for the guests and attendees.

The day is celebrated in India on 9 January each year to mark the contribution of the overseas Indian community to the development of India. It commemorates the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa in Bombay on 9 January 1915. This year’s annual event had a few firsts though. Turnout was huge – about 200 attendees. From corporate honchos, industrialists to senior bureaucrats – you name it, they were present.

Also for first time there was live streaming through media – where people could interact. It was done on a large scale indeed, an achievement which needs to be applauded.

Top dignitaries and personalities spoke at the event. Bob Blackman MP spoke on the importance of UK- India relations. Shailesh Vara MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary at the Ministry of Justicethe chief guest at the event – emphasised on how India is a growing powerhouse today and the importance it has in the western world. He gave example of TATA (an Indian company) that gives employment to approx 50,000 people in the UK and in return contributes to the UK economy. Amarjeet Bhambra (Head – Indian Spiritual sciences) spoke on importance of Indian natural sciences and non invasive medical practices.

Prateek Dattani (UK Director – FICCI India) spoke on the project Investment India, a platform which is a dedicated resource to anyone wanting to invest in India. Manoj Ladwa (Strategic Advisor – Global Business & Government) mentioned about India Inc. and importance of social media and digital media in today’s times.

After the speeches and presentations concluded guests had an opportunity to mingle over drinks and dinner. Virendra Sharma MP told Asian Lite about the event and mentioned that he was ever so disappointed that the focus was not on the average working class Indian living in the UK.

Acting High Commissioner Dr Virander Paul explained the importance of PBD and how it brings people from various walks of life together. He also talked about the LIVE streaming that occurred in the morning and the interactive tool it became for getting people together across the world.

Conservative politician Amandeep Bhogal said the event is about celebrating successes of Oversees Indians and people of Indian origin. He highlighted that the British Indian community is one of the most successful and has played an important role in deriving UK forward.

Other attendees at the high profile event were Mr MP Singh (First Secretary, protocol), Paul Sagoo (Entrepreneur), Air Commodore GS Bedi (Air Advisor), Pravin G Patel (Industrialist) amongst others.

The event was a huge success and it was an opportunity for British Indians to get together and celebrate successes achieved globally!