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Indian Embassy hosts 14th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas
January 16, 2016, 5:58 pm
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More than 300 Indians attended the 14th Pravasi Bhartiya Divas (PBD) celebrations held at the Indian Embassy auditorium on 9 January, to mark the contribution of overseas Indians to the development of India.

The day was marked by select group of India community members speaking and giving suggestions on various issues that they felt needed to be addressed. In his opening address to the gathering, Indian Ambassador H.E. Sunil Jain highlighted the various achievements during the past year, while also providing data on the various activities and functioning of the embassy. He called on Indian associations to take a more active role in community affairs as the embassy had limited strength and resources to look into the needs of the growing Indian community

Highlighting some of the major achievements of the embassy during 2015, Ambassador Jain pointed to the following:
• Illegal flow of Indian female domestic workers stopped;
• Recruitment of Indian nurses streamlined through three State Manpower Recruitment Agencies; viz. NORKA, ODEPC & OMCL; cutting off huge bribes being paid to middlemen
• Trade & Investment: During last two years, Indian EPC companies namely, L&T, Shapoorji Pallonji, ESSAR, DODSAL and Simplex and Kalpataru Transmission received major contracts worth $6 billion. In December 2015, an announcement with regard to Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA)’s investment of US$300 million in GMR Infrastructure Limited was made  
• Air Connectivity: Kuwait Airways now operates daily flights to New Delhi, as well as started flights to Ahmadabad and Bengaluru;
• FE remittances to India:  US$4.8 billion sent to India from Kuwait
• Indian community in Kuwait grew by 5-6 percent during 2015.

Issues raised during the speeches included the following:

• Streamlining the functioning of the 204 Indian associations registered with the Indian embassy in Kuwait
• The need for the Indian embassy and Indian associations, as community representatives, to look into the functioning of the Indian Community School Kuwait
• The need to provide greater assistance to distressed Indians
• A platform to organize cultural events, 
• Increase engagement  with local population to promote India,
• To provide more training to Indians in the field of science and education
• Unjust increase of airfares by national carrier
• Advice on stress related and health issues for the community
• Insurance and pension schemes.

The event was held in a free, frank and friendly atmosphere and members of the various Indian associations were able to express their opinions and also raise questions to the speakers.

The government of India this year had decided to change the format and conduct regional Pravasi gatherings, enabling issues of local concern to also be addressed enabling a broader base of suggestions for implementation.

A K Srivastava, First Secretary information and counsellor at the embassy, conducted the event and Subashis Goldar, Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM), summed up the speakers suggestions and assured that the embassy noted them for consideration/implementation.

The comparative chart of services rendered by Embassy during the calendar year 2015, vis-à-vis 2014, is given below:

 

Particulars

Calendar Year 2015

Calendar Year 2014 

 

Comments/Remarks

 

Passports

87,083

75,031

 Increase of 16%

Visas

13,259

12,719

Increase of 4.2%

Attestations

94,363

96,145

Decrease 1.8%

Emergency Certificates

3,923

2,815

Increase of 40%

Marriage Registrations

45

35

Increase of 28%

Birth Registrations

4,568

4,691

Decrease by 2 %

Deaths of Indian nationals

611

559

Increase by 9% - Rise in suicide, traffic accidents death cases.

504 mortal remains sent to India and 107 local burials.

Death compensation remitted to next of kin in India

Rs. 6.33 Crore

Rs. 6.19 Crore

-

Labour Contracts Visas (18)

 62,587

38,088

Increase of 64%

Labour Contracts

Visas (20)

27,911

 

54,126

Decline by 50%- as female domestic work contracts have been stopped since December 2014.

Shelter provided

726

714

-

Repatriation by Embassy

446

539

Decline by 20%

Deportation by Kuwaiti authorities

824

818

-

Air tickets provided under ICWF

250

278

Decrease by 11%

Indians in local Jails

 376

281

Increase of 33% in drug and alcohol-related cases

 

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