PRAVASI BHARATIYA DIVAS

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (Hindi: प्रवासी भारतीय दिवस, English: Non-Resident Indian Day) is a celebratory day observed (starting in 2001) on 9 January by the Republic of India to mark the contribution of the overseas Indian community towards the development of India. The day commemorates the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa to Mumbai on 9 January 1915.

Established in 2000, it is sponsored by the Ministry of External Affairs of the Government of India and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), the Confederation of Indian Industries and the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region. A celebratory event is held on 7–9 January every other year in an Indian city: a forum for issues concerning the Indian Diaspora is organised and the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards are given.

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Official logo designed by Debasish Sarkar for Ministry of External Affairs, Govt. of India

The decision to celebrate Pravasi Bharatiya Divas was taken in accordance with recommendations of the High Level Committee (HLC) on the Indian Diaspora set up by government of India under the chairmanship of L. M. Singhvi. The then Prime Minister of India, Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee, received the report of the Committee at a public function at Vigyan Bhavan in New Delhi on 8 January 2002, and announced the “Pravasi Bharatiya Divas” (PBD) on 9 January 2002. The day was chosen to mark the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa to India in 1915.

The occasion is marked by special programs to recognise the contributions of NRI/PIO individuals of exceptional merit, felicitate NRI/PIO individuals who have made exceptional contributions in their chosen field/profession (Pravasi Bharatiya Samman (NRI/PIO Award)) and provide a forum to discuss issues and concerns of people of the diaspora. The event has been organised every year since 2003, and is sponsored by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs and the CII (Confederation of Indian Industry), initially sponsored by FICCI.

In 2006, the concept of Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) was launched during the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas convention at Hyderabad on 9 January.

Source: Wiki

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