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A ‘Peaches & Mangoes’ Banquet

December 2003
A ‘Peaches & Mangoes’ Banquet

Georgia-India ventures highlighted at annual GIACC banquet

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The Georgia Indo-American Chamber of Commerce (GIACC) held its 4th annual banquet organized with the theme of "Peaches and Mangoes ". The event was held at the Sheraton Colony Square in Atlanta, on November 15. Guests included Congresswoman from the 4th District, Denise Majette, Indian Counsel General from Houston, SR Tayal, Honorary Counsel General, Ken Cutshaw, and former Commissioner for Department of Industry Trade and Tourisim, R K Sehgal.

Around 250 members, their guests and sponsoring organizations attended the event. The evening was kicked off with a networking session.

In his welcome address, SP Reddy, the president of GIACC spoke about the purpose of the chamber of commerce.

Reddy paid tribute to Ben Jacob, who he said was one of the most active and dedicated members of the GIACC's executive committee. The event was dedicated in memory of Ben Jacobs, who passed away in a tragic car accident earlier this year.

Reddy also spoke about a very successful year for the GIACC, which included assuming a lead role in taking a large delegation from Atlanta and other sister chambers such as Houston, Dallas & Tampa to India.

"We participated in the first NRI Day celebrations which were organized by the Government of India and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry in New Delhi," he said.

Reddy also highlighted the other events hosted by the GIACC during the year, including the successful second Film Festival of India, which was cosponsored by the High Museum of Arts. A seminar was also co-sponsored with the Georgia Tech CIBER (Center for International Business Education and Research)- "Global Business Forum on India's Emerging Technologies & Market", which had Dr Sam Pitroda, the Indian telecom wiz as chief guest. A high level Indian Telecom trade delegation was hosted at Supercomm, he said.

The GIACC president then shared a few of his thoughts on the rapidly emerging US-India cooperation on both security and trade. He said "The Bush administration recognizes India as one of the important global players in the 21st century." Accordingly, he said, it is engaged on various fronts to enlarge the domains of US-India strategic cooperation.

Consul General S R Tayal was the next to address the gathering. He spoke about the strengthening relationships between India and the US and dwelled on the improvements being made on various fronts. He spoke of the common threat that terrorism poses to the US, the most prosperous democracy and India, the largest democracy of the world. Tayal also commended the work of GIACC in promoting trade and commerce between India and Georgia.

Congresswoman Denise Majette spoke briefly about the importance of Indian business to Georgia and highlighted the criticality of the two nations, the two largest democracies in working together. She also spoke about the tremendous potential for trade between the two nations.

Chief of staff at the Atlanta Mayor's office, Greg Pigeon, represented Mayor Shirley Franklin. He spoke about the importance of Atlanta and how the city wants to be a part of commerce between the India and Georgia. He thanked the GIACC for holding its event in the city.

Later, GIACC Distinguished Service awards were presented to Narender Reddy, Aravind Goli and Arvind Swamy for their contribution to the chamber of commerce. GIACC founder and chairman of the board Ani Agnihotri received the Founder's award, while SP Reddy was given the Service to GIACC award. Terri Simmons received the award on behalf of Arnall Golden & Gregory for its contributions to the GIACC.

The evening was capped off with cultural programs followed by dinner. The emcee for the evening was Miss India USA Meghna Nagarajan.


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