Consul General of India celebrates Pravasi Bharatiya Divas in Toronto

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Toronto: The Consul General of India (CGI) office in Toronto on Monday celebrated the Pravasi Bhartiya Divas (PBD) to engage with the Indian diaspora and enable them to share their experiences in various fields.

In spite of the inclement weather, there were about 60 people present to celebrate this event under the aegis of Consul General of India Dinesh Bhatia.

CGI Bhatia said, On this day 102 years back, the great leader Mahatma Gandhi returned to India from South Africa on Jan. 9, 1915 and thereafter his struggle for freedom changed the lives of Indians forever.

He said, the gathering was to reaffirm our roots as we take pride and gain sustenance from our ancestors.

He said, The synergy of the west and east that we represent provide us with a unique position and opportunities to share knowledge between our homeland and Canada.

Bhatia said, Each Indian living abroad was an ambassador representing India in one form or another.

He also said ever since he became the CGI in Toronto in 2016, he has been successful in getting nearly 54 community organizations to be registered with CGI. He said that due to further advancement in communication technology just with one click he was able to share information with thousands of people across Ontario.

Bhatia said there were many NRIs and PIOs (People of Indian Origin) who made significant contributions to Canada in their own fields.

Some of them present at the meet were Ruby Sahota, MP of Brampton North; Ajay Tandon, Director-Tourism and Hospitality Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce; Gurbax Singh Malhi, P.C. Member of Parliament Canada; Joe Li, Regional Councillor, Markham; and Sam Chopra of South Asians in Ontario.

The occasion was marked by announcements of awards in recognition of the contributions of individuals of exceptional merit.

Bhatia announced that Mukund Purohit from Toronto was one of the 30 Indo-Canadian awardees to receive the award from the President of India on Monday.

The dignitaries and guests thanked Bhatia for hosting this event.

Usha Venkatesan, Consul (Culture, Information Community Welfare), gave the welcome speech.

A few said that instead of being represented as South Asians by some of the Indo-Canadian media, they should be represented as Indo-Canadians.

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