NRI hotelier Chatwal all set to invest in his motherland with pride

January 4th, 2008 - 2:30 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Manmohan Singh
Amritsar Jan.4 (ANI): Of the few prominent individuals who have not just prospered, but also commendably done their motherland proud, the name of Sant Singh Chatwal figures in the top slot.
Famously known as a close advisor to Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Rodham Clinton, Chatwal hails from the small town of Faridkot. Migrating to the United States nearly four decades ago, he is today seen as a key mover and shaker in American politics and that country’s public.
Having established one of the largest private hotel chains in the United States, Chatwal is eager to establish ’boutique hotels’ in India. He plans to invest over a billon dollars here.
In an exclusive interview with ANI, he spoke on different facets of his life and career.
Chatwal said: “It delights me to recall how I started as person from a small town of Punjab and went on to set up a chain of hotels and restaurants in America.
Chatwal said: “In my early days in the U.S, I started with a restaurant chain going by the name of “Bombay Palace chain of restaurants. Later, I opened hotels in Canada, Florida and New York. Today, we own eleven hotels, having over 3,000 rooms in Manhattan only. We are planning to expand out hotel business to Bangkok and other parts of the US.”
He informed that having spent a long time abroad; he has now decided to return to his homeland.
“I have big plans for India. We are going to open up 25 hotels with an investment of over abillion and a half dollars. Our first venture has already started in Hyderabad two months ago,” said Chatwal.
“Having left India 40 years ago, I wish to return. After all, being here is actually being at home. I know it’s a big challenge, but I am willing to take it because I know there is a great potential in India,” he said.
“If I could do it in the New York city 30 years back which was an alien place, why can I not do it in my own home country. Of course, America is also my own country since I have been living there for such a long time. But my heart belongs to India.
Chatwal intends to give back what he gained while staying abroad.
“Whatever I have learnt from American market, I will like to bring that to India. Be it the latest technology, the new concept, big projects like modern boutique hotel industry. My son is helping me to bring those concepts in India, which we are planning to set up in the next three to four years,” he said.
About the market potential in India, Chatwal said: “India is no more what it used to be about a decade back. Things have changed now under the tremendous leadership of Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh. Things have stared to change when he was the Finance Minister inthe P.V. Narasimha Rao Government.”
Chatwal said that it was the perfect time to invest in India.
He said: Look at the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) growth and potential right now. Every Non resident Indian (NRI) should see better potential in India to make investment than anywhere in the world.”
About his association with the political world, Chatwal said: I always believed in building the relationship between India and the US which started three decades back. I always insisted on building relations with Congressmen and develop personal relations with Clinton.”
“Now, I am helping Mrs. Hillary Clinton in her political campaign in the USA. I firmly believe that she is a great friend of India and she could be the next President of the United States of America.
About the solution to the problems faced by the Sikh community in the United States, Chatwal said: I feel that we had much bigger problem before 2001. From that point of view, things have changed and have come under control. Mrs. Clinton supported the anti-hate crime bill. This strong law is helping to prevent hate crimes. Moreover, people are educated about Sikhs that we are not from Afghanistan or Bin Laden’s men.
Revealing the secret behind his personal success, Chatwal said: “No one gets success without the blessings of the Almighty. Hard work and vision, however, help to get the work done. My family helps me a lot in all walks of my life, but the credit goes to the Almighty.” (ANI)

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