Varanasi, January 22: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday inaugurated the 15th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi, his parliamentary constituency. In his address, the Prime Minister paid homage to spiritual leader Shivkumar Swami, the 111-year old seer of Karnataka’s Siddaganga Mutt at Tumakuru, who died early at 11.44 am on Monday. Modi also paid tribute to late former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee who started the event for the first time. The Prime Minister said NRIs are brand ambassadors of India and they make India proud. He said, India is the fastest growing economy in the world and is in the position to lead the world in several subjects. "International Solar Alliance (ISA) is one such platform. Through this medium, we want to take the world towards ‘One World, One Sun, One Grid’", he added.
Prime Minister of Mauritius Pravind Jugnauth is the Chief Guest of the Convention this year. Jugnauth will be the chief guest of the convention, while Himanshu Gulati, member of the Parliament of Norway, will be the special guest. Also, Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, member of Parliament of New Zealand, will be the guest of honour. "Looking forward to being in beloved Kashi today for the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas. This is an excellent forum to engage with the Indian diaspora, which is distinguishing itself all over the world", Modi tweeted. Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2019: History, Significance And All About 15th PBD Convention in Varanasi.
The theme of this year's Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is 'Role of Indian diaspora in building new India', a statement from the prime minister's office said. On Monday, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had inaugurated the Youth Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, along with Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. During the inauguration, Swaraj said the Indian diaspora has dramatically changed the world's perception of Indians and India. Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2019: Varanasi All Set to Host Guests With Tent City.
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— PBD Convention (@PBDConvention) January 22, 2019
In the run-up to the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas this year, Prime Minister of Mauritia, Jugnauth, arrived in Varanasi on Monday and was received by Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh. For the first time, the three-day-long Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is being organised from January 21 to 23 instead of January 9. The change in schedule is being done so that participants can visit the Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj and attend the Republic Day parade in the national capital. Sri Sri Sri Shivakumara Swamiji Treated Me Like His Son, Says PM Narendra Modi.
According to reports, President Ram Nath Kovind will address the concluding function of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas on January 23. This year, more than 4,000 NRI delegates from about 85 countries are believed to be attending the event and many of them will be staying in the tent city.