Kamla Persad-Bissessar, a ‘Pravasi Bharatiya’ on her way to India

January 1st, 2012 - 3:44 pm ICT by IANS  

Pratibha Patil Port of Spain, Jan 1 (IANS) Kamla Persad-Bissessar, the Indian-origin prime minister of Trinidad and Tobago in the Caribbean, will be going to India Jan 2 on a state visit, where she will meet President Pratibha Patil and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and also be the chief guest at the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) programme.

One of the highlights of the trip would be Persad-Bissessar’s presence as chief guest at the annual PBD event in Jaipur.
Persad-Bissessar is the first woman head of government from the diaspora and the first dignitary from Trinidad and Tobago to be bestowed with this honour.

Persad-Bissessar’s forefathers came to this twin-island Caribbean nation between 1845 and 1917. They were among the 147,000 Indians who came from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar to work on sugar plantations.

The PBD is an annual event sponsored by the ministry of overseas Indian affairs of the Indian government and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). This time it is also being sponsored by the state government of Rajasthan.

The event aims to promote, nurture and sustain a mutually beneficial and symbolic relationship between India and its diaspora.

The PBD is a prolific gathering for overseas Indians of global repute who are highly successful in their respective fields of business, trade, medicine, science and technology.

Around 1,500 people from over 100 countries are expected to be part of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas event this year.

She will be accompanied by several ministers and top government officials.

Trinidad and Tobago Public Utilities Minister Emmanuel George has said his government was looking to India for its expertise in broadband internet access and water management technologies.

(Paras Ramoutar can be contacted at paras.r@ians.in)

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