India has never attacked any country, nor has it ever coveted anyone’s territory but made the supreme sacrifice while fighting for others, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Sunday, days after the Indian Army conducted surgical strikes against terror launch pads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
“India has not attacked anyone. It is neither hungry for any territory. But in the two World Wars (in which India had no direct stake), 1.5 lakh Indian soldiers laid down their lives, fighting for others,” the Prime Minister said at the inaugural ceremony of the Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra in New Delhi, a modern complex dedicated to overseas Indians.
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Despite the great price paid by Indians, he said India could not make the world realise the importance of its sacrifice. He said whenever he went abroad, he made it a point to visit memorials for Indian soldiers.
The Prime Minister said the Indian diaspora did not believe in indulging in politics or grabbing power abroad, but on the other hand, they mingled with other communities.
Indians, he said, lived abroad with the principle of “social well-being… They are like water. They change their colour and shape as per need”.
Observing that the Indian diaspora should not be looked at in terms of numbers, but in terms of its strength, Modi said there were countries where the Indian community was more powerful than the Indian missions and could help remove the “fear of unknown” among the people there.
While much has been spoken about brain-drain, if the strength of the Indian diaspora is channelised, “we can convert it into brain-gain,” he said.
Like dams channelise the energy of water to generate electricity, a source is needed to utilise the energy of the 2.45 crore strong Indian diaspora to “light up India”, he said.