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Ambassador-at-Large Hosts Women’s Workshop

March 2004
Ambassador-at-Large Hosts Women’s Workshop

Makes other high profile appearances in a two-day visit

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Following the successful organization of the New York workshop and as a part of the ongoing projects activities, the Office of the Ambassador-at-Large for Non-Resident Indians and Persons of Indian Origin organized the second workshop on "Women's issues: A Diaspora Perspective" on 7th February in Atlanta, Georgia.

The workshop was attended by about 50 representatives of women's organizations, community leaders and academicians. Dr B.K. Agnihotri, Ambassador-at-Large for Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and Persons of Indian Origin (PIOs) chaired the workshop.

The workshop was based on the themes of "Challenges and problems, if any, faced by Indo-American women: their perspective & experiences in the American society", "How Indo-American women can be instrumental in helping India, preserving Indian value system in America and guiding the new generation" and "Role Indo-American women can play in educating Americans about India and Indian heritage". The main theme papers were respectively presented by discussion leaders Aparna Bhattacharya, Indu Dey and Preeti Sharma.

Specific issues highlighted in the workshop covered the child and youth / college age ?related problems confronted by Indo-American women, larger community role playing by women and importance of health care, leadership and philanthropic issues in developing individual roles etc. There was a open, extensive and healthy discussion by all the participants. Ms. Rachana Gupta, who was the moderator, summed up the discussion.

In his closing remarks, Dr B.K. Agnihotri stated that large scale and active participatory role by the diaspora in community, volunteer, political and intellectual activities of the country and the society they reside in will lead to their being helpful in the growth and prosperity of both USA and India.

A number of workshops involving Indo-American women are being organized in various cities by the Office of the Ambassador-at-Large.

Ambassador talks about outsourcing and trade with GIACC board

Dr Agnihotri, also met with the leadership of the Georgia Indo-American Chamber of Commerce (GIACC), on February 8th. The meeting was attended by the members and the executives of the Chamber including Kirtan Patel, president, Ani Agnihotri, vice-president, C.N. Madhusudan, Dr Ash Thakker, Vinod Keni and Kenneth A. Cutshaw, Honorary Consul of India in Georgia.

The Ambassador-at-Large stressed that the Chamber should play lead role in educating the local trade and industry on the misinformation being spread on the issue of outsourcing. Outsourcing actually does not lead to a net loss of jobs and rather is to be seen as resource allocation and creation of additional revenue by the American corporate sector. Outsourcing is an important part of the globalization process and must not be linked up to pure short-term analysis of movement of jobs. Greater understanding of the problem by the U.S. corporate sector will help in countering spread of the misinformation and backlash against Indian companies. The NRI chambers have an important role to play in this regard, he said.

The discussion also covered various issues including Indo-American bilateral trade and economic relations, role of NRI Chambers of Commerce and Industry and various steps being undertaken by the Government of India to attract foreign investment and large-scale economic participation by the Indian Diaspora in infrastructure development and other projects.

Ambassador-at-Large also briefed the delegation on the policy transformation and investment opportunities being created in India that require greater Indian, American and Indo-American participation.

"Play Larger Role To Educate American Public", Ambassador Exhorts GAAPI Members

During his two-day visit to Atlanta, Dr Agnihotri, also addressed a large function organized by GAAPI (Georgia American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin) on February 7th. The meeting was attended by all the previous presidents of the chapter, members, prominent community leaders and other invitees.

Besides the address, the format of the meeting followed a lengthy interactive session covering the issues of growing Indo-US relations, role of Indian caucus in the US Congress, issues such as terrorism, Kashmir, philanthropy etc. Ambassador-at-Large stressed on the importance of GAAPI as dual role playing both in the USA and as well as in India. In his view, philanthropic participation for the local causes as well as Indian causes must be equally divided to be worthwhile. Satisfaction and not equitable return in profits should be the sole criteria for participating in philanthropic causes. Dr Agnihotri praised GAAPI for its growing social welfare projects in the healthcare sector in India.


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