President flags concerns of women marrying into NRI families

Bangluru: Highlighting the vulnerabilities of Indian women marrying into NRI families, President Pranab Mukherjee on Monday said that Indian community organisations abroad can most effectively address their concerns even as the government and its agencies deal with the issue.

“I would also like to flag the concerns of women and girls in India marrying into NRI families. Even as the government and its agencies deal with this issue, the concerns of this particular section can be most effectively addressed by the local community organisations,” the President said.

The President was delivering the valedictory address during the conferment of the ‘Pravasi Bharatiya Samman’ at the 14th edition of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) held here on January 7-9.

Speaking on the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman, Mukherjee said, “It was indeed an honour for me to have conferred the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman on 30 members of the diaspora just a while back. I congratulate each one of you for your contributions to your countries of origin and India.”

Highlighting the contribution of the Non-resident Indians working in the Gulf region and South East Asia, he said, “They are Indian citizens who migrate for employment as low-skilled and semi-skilled labour. They toil hard day and night, and save to send the fruits of their labour as remittances to India, to maintain their families back home.”

“These remittances are the largest by any diaspora, at 12 per cent of the total global remittances, amounting to $69 billion in 2015,” he added.

The President appreciated the overseas Indians’ ability to assimilate and maintain their identity among other cultures. He also lauded their immense contribution to their adopted lands through dedication and hard work.

The President said, “As a people exposed to the best of western technology and yet having their civilisational moorings in the ageless and eternal ethos of India, you are doubly blessed.”

“While you showcase India to your host countries, you also bring along the cultural heritage of your adopted lands to India. To my mind, nothing could exemplify our belief of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ more than this,” he added.

On the eminent personalities from the diaspora, Mukherjee gave the example of the Portuguese Prime Minister and said, “Dr Antonio Costa, the Prime Minister of Portugal who is with us today, has his roots in Goa. His presence here is a source of inspiration for us, and for the Indian Diaspora across the world.”

“India’s relations with Portugal have been and continue to stay warm and friendly with close political, security, cultural and most importantly people-to-people ties,” he added.

He also cited the example of Vice President of Suriname Michael Ashwin Adhin, considered as one of the youngest Indian diaspora leaders.

The Indian diaspora migrated to Suriname nearly 142 years ago. More than 230,000 persons of Indian-origin are living in Suriname.

Indians are one of the largest expatriate community amounting to about 31.7 millions in the world.