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Preparation of Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2019

High Commission of India

Port Louis


Press Release

Preparations of Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2019 

In connection with the forthcoming Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) Convention to be held in Varanasi from 21-23 January 2019, the High Commission of India organized an interaction with nearly 300 representatives of Mauritian Socio-Cultural organizations and the Indian community on 13 October 2018 at the Indira Gandhi Centre for Indian Culture (IGCIC) Phoenix. Addressing the audience, High Commissioner Shri Abhay Thakur said the website was launched on 15 September 2018, and online registration for participation in PBD 2019 will be open until 15 November 2019. In addition to the PBD, participants would be given the opportunity to visit Prayagraj for Kumbh Mela on 24 January 2019 and witness the Republic Day Parade at New Delhi on 26 January 2019. On 22 January 2019, Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi will inaugurate the PBD Convention. On 23 January 2019, the Valedictory Address will be delivered and Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards will be conferred by Hon’ble Rashtrapatiji Shri Ram Nath Kovind. At the invitation of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of Mauritius Hon. Pravind Kumar Jugnauth will be the Chief Guest of the PBD Convention. Mr. Himanshu Gulati, Member of Parliament of Norway, will be the Special Guest and Mr. Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, Member of Parliament of New Zealand will be the Guest of Honor at the Youth PBD on 21 January 2019. The PBD Convention is a flagship event of the Government of India and provides an important platform to engage and connect with the overseas diaspora. The theme of PBD 2019 is "Role of Indian Diaspora in building a New India.”

High Commissioner Abhay Thakur said that a group “Mauritius PIO” has been created to enable group registration on the website Special rates are available for group registrations, i.e., 25% discount for group size of 5 to 50 registered participants, 35% discount for group size of 51 to 100 registered participants and 50% discount for groups with more than 100 registered participants. To avail maximum group discount and effective coordination, Mauritian socio-cultural organizations and individuals can register under this group, being coordinated by the Government of Mauritius. Registered participants can book any of the three types of accommodation:- hotel accommodation on special PBD rates, tented accommodation with basic facilities on special rates, and complimentary bed and breakfast facilities hosted by residents of Varanasi. Transport arrangements by Indian authorities would cover free of cost travel from Varanasi to Prayagraj (Allahabad) for the Kumbh Mela, and thereafter from Prayagraj to New Delhi by special trains, so as to reach Delhi on 25 January 2019. Accommodation in New Delhi will need to be arranged by participants themselves. High Commissioner emphasized that it would be advisable to complete registration formalities in a timely manner even before the 15 November 2018 deadline, to enable orderly booking of accommodation and transport arrangements.

Recalling that the 150th anniversary year celebrations of Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the Indian nation and the most prominent Pravasi Bharatiya, had commenced on 2 October 2018, High Commissioner presented a set of seven commemorative stamps on Gandhiji released by the Government of India to Mrs. Gayetree Usha Brijmohun, Chairperson, Mauritius Post. During the event, a digital display on the life of Mahatma Gandhi was shown and the international version of the Gandhiji’s favourite Bhajan ‘Vaishnav Jan To’, sung by leading artists of more than forty countries, was played. High Commissioner recalled that the visit of Mahatma Gandhi to Mauritius in 1901, mentioned by Gandhiji in his autobiography, and his subsequent decision to send Barrister Manilal Doctor to Mauritius to provide legal assistance to indentured labourers, had given a significant impetus to the Mauritian freedom struggle. Two documentary films on Mahatma Gandhi: (i) Gandhi Lives and (ii) Mahatma Gandhi a Great Soul of 20th Century, were screened on the occasion and applauded by the audience.

High Commissioner handed over of a set each of Indian musical instruments, received from ICCR, to 15 leading socio-cultural organizations of Mauritius representing various regions and sections of society. These included the Bhojpuri Speaking Union, Mauritius Telugu Maha Sabha, Ramayana Centre, Gahlot Rajput Maha Sabha, Mauritius Sanatan Dharma Temples Federation, Arya Sabha, Human Service Trust, Mahatma Gandhi Institute, Mauritius Marathi Mandali Federation, World Brahmin Federation (Mauritius), Mauritius Hindu Maha Sabha, Mauritius Tamil Culture Trust, Hindu House, Hindi Speaking Union and Aligarh Muslim University Alumni Association. The event concluded with a Navratri food reception. 

Musical instruments were distributed to representatives of various socio-cultural organizations from left to right: Mr. Jaynarain Meetoo, Chairman, MGI-RTI Council; Dr. Raveendra Woodun, Representative from Hindi Speaking Union; Mr. V. Ramdhun, President, Hindu House; Ms. Velamah Cathapermal-Nair, Mauritius Tamil Culture Trust; Mr Premchand Boojhawon MSK (Munshi), Vice-President GOPIO (Mtius); Dr. O. N. Gangoo, President, Arya Sabha, Mr. Rajenrah Ramdheean, President, Mauritius Sanatan Dharma Temples Federation; Shri Abhay Thakur, High Commissioner of India; Mr. Seemadree Latchayya, President, Mauritius Telugu Maha Sabha; Dr. Mrs. Sarita Budhoo, Chairperson, Bhojpuri Speaking Union, Mr. Shailen Ramkissoon, O.S.K, World Brahmin FDN (Mauritius); Mr. Rajendra Arun, Chairperson, Ramayana Centre; Mr. Asant Govind, President, Mauritius Marathi Mandali Federation; Mr Dharmanand Gobin, President, Gahlot Rajput Maha Sabha; Mr. B. Dabeesing, President, Mauritius Hindu Maha Sabha, Mr. Farook Bauccha, Executive Member, Aligarh Muslim University Allumni Association; Mrs. Shahina Assen, President, Aligarh Muslim University Allumni Association 

Audience at the Indira Gandhi Centre for Indian Culture for the Celebration of 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi: Row 1: 4th from left Mr. Abdool Raouf Bundhun, G.O.S.K. PBSA, Former Vice President of Mauritius; 1st from right: Ms Soulekha Jepaul Raddhoa, Mayor, Quatre Bornes 

High Commissioner of India, Shri Abhay Thakur presenting seven special commemorative stamps released by the Government of India to Mrs. Gayetree Usha Brijmohun, President, Mauritius Post


Port Louis

15 October 2018

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