US-bound Sushma Swaraj returns mid-way in wake of Paris attacks

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj Swaraj, was on her way to the US for the Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, returned to New Delhi from mid-way in view of the Paris terror attacks.

By: PTI | Los Angeles | Updated: November 15, 2015 3:33 pm
paris attacks, sushma swaraj, sushma swaraj US trip, Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, US Indians event sushma, paris shootout, paris attack probe, latest news, world news, india news External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj Swaraj, was on her way to the US for the Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, returned to New Delhi from mid-way in view of the Paris terror attacks. (Source: Express file photo by Amit Mehra)

The terror assaults in France have cast a shadow over the Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas in Los Angeles with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, who was on her way to the US to inaugurate the event, returning to India mid-way in the wake of the attacks.

The Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas kicked off yesterday with hundreds of attendees honouring the victims of the horrific attacks with a minute’s silence.

Swaraj, who was on her way to the US, returned to New Delhi from mid-way in view of the Paris terror attacks.

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Officials in New Delhi said Swaraj, who had a transit halt at Dubai on her way to the US, came back from there itself after hearing about the attacks in Paris that claimed over 120 lives.

Gen (rtd) V K Singh, the Minister of State for External Affairs, is now expected to attend the two-day event.

As the nearly 1,000 Indian-Americans attending the two-day event in Los Angeles mourned the loss of lives in the Paris terror attacks, top American lawmaker from California Brad Sherman said the attack in the French capital had all the hallmarks of the Mumbai terror attack that was launched in November 2008 by Lashkar-e-Taiba with the support of the Pakistani Army and its intelligence agencies.

“Today we should take a moment to reflect the attacks in Paris, New York, Iraq…and Mumbai. The Paris attack is based on model of the Mumbai terrorist attack,” said Sherman, a former Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Sub-committee on Terrorism.

The Paris and Mumbai attacks have shown how a small group of people can create havoc in a city.

“Attack on Mumbai was supported by LeT, Pakistan Army and its intelligence agency. The planning for this took several years,” he said adding that now ISIS has adopted the Mumbai model in Paris.

“We have to stand up to terrorism to say enough is enough,” Sherman said.

In his address at the event, Indian Ambassador to the US Arun K Singh said there is an increasing desire among the Indian-Americans to connect with India.

Among the Indian diaspora, there is consciousness about the growing opportunities in India, he said.

Referring to the steps taken by the Narendra Modi-led government in the last 18 months, the Ambassador said with the changes happening in India there are growing opportunities in the country.

In the first six months of this year, India received the maximum FDI. India also topped the degree of confidence index this year, he said .

Indian-Americans, Singh said, have been contributing a lot to the development of both India and the United States.

The Indian government yesterday announced new internship programme for Indian-Americans youths in India.

“Indian American community is playing an essential role in America in every way,” said Congresswoman Judy Chu, Chairman of the powerful Asian Pacific American Caucus.

At the event, Kali P Chaudhuri, Chairman and Founder of the KPC Group of Companies, was presented with the NRI of the Year Award.

The Indian Consul General at the Indian Consulate in San Francisco Venkatesan Ashok also spoke on the occasion.

Anil K Agarwal, Secretary in the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs, said the Indian Diaspora is making a very important contribution to the India-US relationship.

Noting that somewhere deep in the heart of the Indian-Americans there is desire to make India a country of opportunities as is this country, he said, “We in Ministry our task to provide you with a platform to fulfil this desire of yours.”

The theme of the event is ‘The Indian Diaspora: Defining a New Paradigm in India-US relationship’ which aims to capture the ethos of the India-US relationship.

Los Angeles is only the second US city to host the Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (RPBD), after New York.

Previous venues for RPBD events were London, Sydney, Toronto, Singapore, Durban, Mauritius and The Hague.

The Overseas Indian Facilitation Centre (OIFC) of the Confederation of Indian Industry also organised an Indian Diaspora Business Meet on the sidelines of the Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas.

Officials from Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, Jharkhand and Kerala also participated in the business meet.

The inaugural event was followed by a cultural extravaganza.

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  1. C
    Nov 15, 2015 at 7:54 pm
    Any help to Lalit Modi?
    1. N
      Nov 15, 2015 at 9:40 pm
      There was absolutely no need for her to cancel her visit to the US. Already, the Indian diaspora is unhappy with her for cancelling the 2016 Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) in India and instead having a PBD wth 150 NRIs. The annual PBD in India was a great success attracting thousands of NRIs and PIOs. They all feel cheated by Shushma's act --- she killed an event started by Vajpayee.
      1. Hemen Parekh
        Nov 17, 2015 at 12:30 pm
        From Inter-Pol to Inter-Mil ? Over the past 100 years, countries of the World have insuted quite a few organizations to deal with international issues . These include : * United Nations ( earlier, League of Nations ) and its various arms * World Bank * International Monetary Fund ( IMF ) * World Trade Organization ( WTO - earlier , UNCTAD ) * International Court of Justice - Hague * Atomic Inspection Agency * Environment Protection Agency and , * International Police ( Inter-Pol ) During the past decade, the World is facing another major international threat to civilization It is " Terrorism " " Terrorism " is characterized as follows : * Distinct from # Internal conflicts / civil wars , within a nation's boundaries # Localized commotions / disobedience / militancy , within a country # Breakdown of " Law and Order " situations , inside a country # Country's citizens trying to overthrow an oppressive dictatorship / military rule * Spread across international borders * Unrelated to any geographical / territorial disputes between countries * Hiding under fundamentalist ideologies that disregard human rights * Trying to overthrow democratically elected legitimate por governments * Killing innocent citizens * Poisoning the minds of Youth with hatred for certain peace-loving / non-violent religions or philosophies * Recruiting children / women as shields against reprisals by legitimate authorities * Glorifying suicidal attacks while bombing peaceful gathering of people * Aided and abated by black money / arms , from sympathizers everywhere Of course , this is not a comprehensive definition of " Terrorism " , but it is good enough for UN to adopt it right away And it is high time , UN forms, along the lines of Inter-Pol , Inter- Mil ( International Military ) And lay down clear and unambiguous rules under which : * Any country affected by terrorism, can seek intervention / help from Inter-Mil , OR * UN itself may take suo moto cognizance of such terrorism anywhere in the World ( and not only confined to the territory of a Member Country ) , and act on its own to press Inter-Mil into service , to eliminate terrorists and their supporters Such unilateral action on part of the Security Council , will not require any " Invitation / Permission " from countries affected , nor can such Security Council Resolution be vetoed I request the readers to " Like / Share / Re-tweet / Forward " this message to policy-makers / opinion-makers , all over the World ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- hemen parekh 17 Nov 2015