Gangtok, Apr 20 (UNI) Sikkim Chief Minister Pawan Chamling today called upon the Nepali community of Indian origin to face the challenges and grab the opportunities offered in the wake of the globalisation to carve out a niche for themselves in the national mainstream.
Inaugurating a three-day national conference on''Identity and Nationality of the Indian Nepalis: Issues and Perspectives'' here, he said the Nepali community lagged far behind in various fields including in education, politics and trade as they failed to march with the changing time in this fast paced competitive world.
Mr Chamling said India was emerging as a major economic global power following liberalisatiion and offered a lot of challenges and opportunities. The Nepalis should come forward to take up the challenges, assert themselves and contribute for the nation building.
He said as the tea plantation, cinchona cultivatiion and agriculture, the traditional livelihood of the Nepalis, had dried up over the years, an alternative has to be found out for the socio-economic development of the community.
He said Indian Nepalis are the citizens of the country and any suspicion of their loyalty to the nation was mainly due to the lack of knowledge of the other communities about them.
About 100 delegates from 13 states of the country and some foreign countries like France, UK, Netherland are scheduled to deliberate on 26 themes on different aspects of the Nepali community during the three-day conference.
Sikkim Legislative assembly Speaker D Takarpa and Minister for Cultural and Heritage Affairs G M Gurung were among others spoke on the occasion.
UNI BD PC RD 1453