New Delhi, India. From January 7th to January 9th, the U.S. India Political Action Committee (USINPAC) delegation of prominent business leaders, entrepreneurs, political activists, and professionals from the Indian-American community dialogued with senior Indian government officials at the federal and state levels about the U.S.-India relationship, the growth of the Indian economy, and other important domestic issues.
One theme woven through all the meetings was the importance of the Indian-American community and its continued engagement, and the role played by USINPAC in encouraging, informing and fostering that engagement. "All ethnic communities abroad maintain ties to their countries of origin, but the Indian-American community is particularly strong and focused in this regard, says Mr. Sanjay Puri, USINPAC Chairman and leader of the delegation. "Just as all Diasporas are not equally connected, so too not all home countries are as welcoming of their involvement as we always see time and time again on these visits with the Indian government and the society as a whole."
The USINPAC delegation was particularly interested in what Mr. Kamal Nath, the Minister of Commerce and Industry, had to say about the status of the U.S.-India Civilian Nuclear Agreement process. "There is a delay undoubtedly in the nuclear deal but it is not thrown away," said Minister Nath. The Minister went on to emphasis that additional time in the process should not alarm anyone given that this represents very new waters for both the American and Indian governments and so too their respective citizens as well.
Another important topic for Minister Nath was the role that the Indian-American community and USINPAC can and should play as educators and advocates in the United States on the realities of globalization. The Minister sees globalization as positively intertwining and benefiting the economies of the two countries.
Mr. Ashwini Kumar, the Minister of Industry, echoed Minister Nath's thanks to the Indian-American community as fulfilling an important ambassadorial role for India abroad, and described the community as catalysts of change evident in the work on the nuclear deal and how the relationship with the United States has evolved from one driven by ideology to one driven by identity. "Over ninety percent of Indians feel socially, intellectually, and even culturally closer to America than anyone else in the world," Minister Kumar stated.
USINPAC is the political voice of 2.5 million Indian-Americans. USINPAC provides bipartisan support to candidates for federal, state and local office who support the issues that are important to the Indian-American community. For more information, go to www.usinpac.com.