Cement bond with your home country, Minister tells diaspora youth

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New Delhi, Sep 26 (UNI) Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi today asked the youth of Indian origin to cement a bond with their home country.

Addressing diaspora youths from ten countries in the capital, he said the country was proud of the present generation of diaspora, who are placed in prominent positions across the globe.

Mr Ravi lauded the fighting spirit of Indian immigrants and said their offspring should learn about their socio-cultural roots through direct interaction with the country.

The 31 foreign youths of Indian origin met the Minister after completing a three-week journey to see and understand the development and achievements of India.

They shared their experience with the Minister and described the trip as meaningful and beneficial.

The youths had an interaction with President Pratibha Devisingh Patil at the Rashtrapati Bhavan yesterday.

They visited various prominent places and institutions in the Capital, including the IIT. The youth are leaving for their homes on the 28th of this month on completion of their visit.

The diaspora youth in the age group of 18-26 years constitute students and professionals. They came here under the Know India Programme (KIP) of the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs.

A maximum of 12 participants have come from South Africa, followed by six from Israel. All expenditure except a one-way fare is borne by the Indian Government.

After arriving in Mumbai on the 7th of this month, the youths started off for Gujarat on the first leg of their India tour. In Gujarat, the group spent eight days. They visited diamond industry in Surat, Gujarat Narmada Fertiliser Company, Harappan ruins, the Amul cooperative in Anand, Sabarmati Ashram, Gandhi Dham, Dandi, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Museum, and IIM, Ahmedabad.

The group also visited Uttar Pradesh for nine days. They went to the historic cities of Agra, Allahabad, Lucknow and Varanasi.

Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh were the two partner states for the programme this year. The youths had interaction with Indian youths, women organisations and also visited Gram Panchayats.

The 'Know India Programme' (KIP), is implemented in partnership with a state government and the logistics support of the Nehru Yuvak Kendra and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

The three-week internship programme is designed to promote awareness about India, its socio-cultural diversities, its emergence as an economic powerhouse, a centre of higher education and the ongoing developments in the infrastructure, technology and other sectors.

It also enables the visiting youth to share their experience, expectations and views and to bond closely with contemporary India.

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