A noted Indian-American physician has withdrawn from the annual Wharton India Economic Forum (WIEF) in the wake of the organisers decision to cancel a key-note address by Chief Minister Narendra Modi.
New Jersey-based physician,philanthropist and publisher Sudhir Parikh was invited to address the conference on March 23 in place of The Wall Street columnist Sadanand Dhume,who withdrew from the meet in protest of the forums handling the Modi affair.
As an immigrant of over 30 years standing and dedicated to promoting the cause of India and Indian Americans,I look forward to sharing my thoughts about NRIs as ambassadors of India, Dr Parikh told WIEF.
However,the manner in which the committee has been pressurised to rescind its invitation to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on entirely suspicious grounds,I feel the intellectual integrity of the forum has been compromised, Dr Parikh said in his letter.
Parikh,who is publisher of several Indian American publications in the US,said that as a publisher he is constrained to err on the side of the free flow of ideas and unfettered discussion public policy issue in academics and journalism. It is for this reason,I have no choice but to withdraw my name from the panel of speakers of this years forum, said Parikh,who in 2012 was conferred with the Padma Shri.