The High Commission of India to Guyana hosted an evening Reception on the occasion of the 74th India Republic Day. The reception was held at the Pegasus Convention Center in Georgetown. President Irfaan Ali was the Chief Guest who delivered the feature address after His Excellency Dr KJ Srinivasa spoke. Several Guyanese intellectuals were honored for their contributions to the welfare of the Indian community. Several youngsters were also recognized for their CXC achievements in 2022. The HC issued the below release:
A Reception was held at the Atlantic Ballroom of New Pegasus Hotel, Georgetown, in the evening on 26th January 2023. H.E. Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali – President of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, Vice President H.E. Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo, former President H.E. Mr. Donald Ramotar, Cabinet Ministers, Diplomats, Members of Parliament, senior government officials, CEOs and other dignitaries attended the Reception. The event had colourful cultural programmes that included traditional and modern items of dance presented by Ms. Varsha J. Chaudhari, dance teacher and students of Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre (SVCC), a mesmerizing dance by National Dance Company, and fusion dance showcasing Ind-Afro-Guyanese dance talent. A yoga performance organized by Mr. Mohit Kumar, Yoga teacher of SVCC, was highly appreciated by the audience. Highlight of the Reception was a presentation of dresses of 11 Indian states by 22 members of Indian Diaspora and Indian nationals in a very attractive and rhythmic way, conceived and choreographed by Mrs. Ashwini, spouse of High Commissioner.
Five students: (1) Ms. Atisha Seenarine; (2) Mr. Vish Kistama; (3) Mr. Uotam Heeralall; (4) Mr. Ramoll Baboolall and (5) Mr. Daniel Dowding who achieved top positions in CAPE and CSEC examinations in 2022 were also honored. Four prominent members of Indian Diaspora (1) Prof. Tota Charran Mangar, (2) Dr. Vishnu Bisram, (3) Mr. Ravindra Dev and (4) Mr. Purshotam Persaud Shivraj who excelled in the fields of Diaspora studies, Indology, Indian languages and culture were also felicitated by the President and High Commissioner for promoting India-Guyana relationship.
Both the events were live-streamed on the social media of the High Commission and Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre.
In his speech, High Commissioner Dr. Srinivasa recounted the history of Indian Republic, challenges faced and how the “Indian spirit” had triumphed over the adversities and challenges due to a long colonial rule. Paying tribute to Dr. B R Ambedkar and other leaders for drafting the world’s longest written Constitution, High Commissioner recounted India’s success in digital technology, space technology, women’s empowerment, food security for the poor, self-reliance in most sectors including defence, etc. India, currently the world’s 5th largest economy, also holds the Presidency of G-20 for 2023 and looks forward to promote democracy and multilateralism through the forum for shaping a better world and better future, with a more equitable and sustainable world order. He narrated Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s initiatives for combatting climate change, global warming etc. through development and popularization of solar energy/electric vehicles, LiFE Movement launched in October 2022, International Solar Alliance as well as the International Year of Millets 2023.
High Commissioner stated that high level interactions during the recent official visit in January 2023 between President Ali and Indian President Smt. Droupadi Murmu, Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, leading Cabinet Ministers including External Affairs Minister Dr. S Jaishankar and other Ministers including those for agriculture, agro-processing, petroleum and natural gas, health etc. along with widespread interaction with the business leaders has given a new impetus for widespread collaboration between India and Guyana especially in infrastructure, healthcare, pharmacy, agriculture, agro-processing, renewable energy, transport, education, information technology, biotechnology, human resource development, skills and capacity building smf climate change sectors etc. He thanked Guyana for official recognizing the Government of India’s selfless acts as a nation that holds true to the Hindi phrase “Vasudhev Kutumbukam” (the world is one family). He called upon both sides to continue upgrading the partnership.
In his keynote address, H.E. Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali, lauded the achievements of India, enhanced relations between the two nations and India’s positive impact on Guyana and its citizens through the ages. He noted that India presents Guyana with the opportunity to improve its technology, especially as it relates to agriculture sector and said that he expects both countries to work together to build an Agro-tech campus in Guyana to support the “Regional Food Hub”. He added that over the few months a number of measures aimed at creating an ecosystem in the agriculture sector focusing on high value, new areas and innovations will be done. President Ali recounted his experiences in India which has established itself as a dominant power house in ICT, biotechnology, agro-processing, agriculture, renewable energy etc. whose examples and best practices Guyana can learn from. He also mentioned his discussions with various policymakers and stakeholders in the technology sector and hoped to tap India through technology development and build new technology centres. He lauded India as a bilateral partner and stressed upon continuing the historic relationship between the two countries.