Melbourne [Australia], August 7 (ANI): India has been undergoing a historic change under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has tried to touch the life of every common man, and is tirelessly working to ensure that every Indian gets all the basic elements for their well-being and welfare, said Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture, Meenakshi Lekhi at an event in Melbourne.
The Indian minister was speaking as a chief guest at the 'Vishwa Sadbhavana' event organised by the NID Foundation. She launched two books "Heartfelt-the legacy of faith" and "Modi @ 20: Dreams Meet Delivery" depicting Prime Minister Narendra Modi's unique and hugely successful governance, and his love and affection for humanity in general and Indians in particular, irrespective of region or religion.
Taking to Twitter, the minister said, "Deeply honoured to attend 'Vishwa Sadhbhavana Event' in Melbourne and released 2 books in Australia "Modi@20:Dreams Meet Delivery" & "Heartfelt The Legacy of Faith". Glad to interact with vibrant Indian diaspora at the event. Thanks, @JulianHillMP for your participation."
Addressing the gathering, Lekhi in her speech, said that the nation has got Prime Minister Narendra Modi as its leader to take it to the top of the world, a place it always deserved.
"Every once in a while India needs change and if you analyse history, you will know that someone great comes along and brings the needed change. After Maharaja Ranjit Singh and Maratha Queen Ahilya Bai Holkar, if someone is capable of bringing that massive change, it is our Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and he is proving that right," the minister said.
The minister went on to say that PM Modi has tried to touch the lives of the common man through various policies and schemes launched during the last 8 years in office. A righteous man like him is not afraid of doing the right thing. It was due to this that he was able to bring the change this country required.
"Unlike previous governments, it didn't take him 70 years to figure that common citizen of this country required toilets. As many as 20 Crore toilets were constructed in a record time. India has had economists as Prime Ministers, but it was only Narendra Modi who enrolled the poor of this country into the formal economy, opening 38 crore bank accounts within 4 months, as opposed to 12 Crore opening in the last 70 years. This not only ensured the common man's inclusive participation in nation building but also ensured Direct Bank Transfers, thus eliminating corruption," she said.
She said that Prime Minister has been very close to Sikhs and Punjab from his early days as a politician, serving as the BJP general secretary for Punjab. He has undertaken many projects for resurrection, revamping and reconstruction of various Gurudwaras under the PRASAD scheme which includes announcement of Sikh tourist circuits connecting the 5 holy Takhts, renovation of heritage at Gurudwara Fatehgarh Sahib or work done at National Martyrs Memorial at Hussainiwala in Punjab, the cremation site of Indian freedom fighters Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Rajguru.
"The Prime Minister has taught the Indians to be proud of their culture and roots, but at the same time be at one table with the world, the minister said, adding that PM Modi believes in becoming self-reliant and then only can we help others. During the testing times of Covid-19, the world has seen how capable India was," Lekhi added.
Speaking at the occasion, Indian High Commissioner to Australia, Manpreet Vohra said that not only the Indian diaspora in Australia has grown in number, but the peer-to-peer relationship between the two communities has also grown stronger than ever.
"Indian diaspora here has risen to achieve great success despite coming from humble backgrounds. Their contribution to Australia, socially, economically or even culturally is greatly acknowledged, and has contributed significantly in taking India-Australia relationships to a new level," he said.
"I might be your high commissioner here, but each one of you is an ambassador of India in Australia," he said and congratulated the attendance ahead of the 75th Independence Day of India, which will also mark 75 years of India-Australia diplomatic relationship," he added.
Member of Australian Parliament, Julian Hill congratulated the NID Foundation for organising the event and said that the two books launched on the day were significant, in the sense that they not only highlight and celebrate Narendra Modi's life, but also India and all of its people.
"India is the world's biggest multi-cultural and multi-faith democracy. This is a great incident that today's event coincides with the 75th independence day celebration of India. In the 75 years, India has truly shown what they are capable of and the entire world acknowledges that," Hill said.
He said that there are almost 700,000 Indians living in Australia, a huge number as per Australian standards. It is impossible to imagine multicultural Australia without the contribution of the Indian community living here.
"In the last 2 years, Australia saw hard times in the shape of bushfires and covid-19. The way temples and gurudwaras opened up their hearts and doors for those affected in these times have really got the Indian Diaspora here to gain national acclaim, building India's reputation here in Australia," he said.
"Unlike past, India and Australia today share more than just Commonwealth and Cricket. Our ties fuelled by shared challenges and opportunities have been on rise for a long time now, and the Indian diaspora here is the largest driving force behind this," Hill added.
Chief Patron of NID Foundation, Satnam Singh Sandhu also hailed PM Modi and termed him an illustrious leader and highly experienced strategist but an even better humanist.
Sandhu expressed gratitude for the pro-people decisions taken by the current dispensation under PM Modi's rule, including several decisions in the interests of the Sikh community and the NRIs.
"The role of Indian Diaspora remains at the core of India's pursuit of becoming a 'Vishwa Guru' (World Leader) and Modi Ji has made sure that they remain at the heart of it. On every trip of any country, the Prime Minister takes out time to meet the Indian community there, to talk to them, interact with them and take stock of any problem or issues they might be facing," he said.
Sandhu said that in the 8 years of being in power, Prime Minister has shown all the traits of being a true global leader, in his efforts to bring the entire world together. This very spirit is the spirit of Sadhbhavana.
Further, praising the NID Foundation, Sandhu said, "The book 'Heartfelt-The Legacy Of Faith' was an honest attempt at documenting the facts of the history of the Sikh community and the teachings and philosophies of the Sikh Gurus.
"It captures the five essential virtues of Sikhism that are Satt, Santokh, Daya, Nimrata and Pyar, and goes on to show that the values and ethos of the country are not forgotten, rather they are being implemented in our governance model because of their universal and timeless relevance, thereby highlighting the Prime Minister's embodiment of upholding truthful values, compassion, humility, contentment, and love for all mankind," he said.
"The other book, 'Modi@20: Dreams Meet Delivery' by famed Oncologist in America Dr Bharat Barai, is a compilation of chapters by intellectual and domain experts, providing with an expansive exploration into the fundamental transformation of Gujarat and India over the last 20 years due to his unique kind of Governance," Sandhu said.
First, to be organised in Australia, the Vishwa Sadbhavana was the latest in the series of such events organised by the NID foundation and picks up from the legacy of the last event held in the City of Chicago, USA in June this year.
The event hosted by the NID Foundation was organised to celebrate the exceptional progress achieved by Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi for the welfare and well-being of the Indian diaspora spread across the globe, as well as his good governance model, an official statement said.
During the event, eminent people from Australia and the Indian Diaspora including Thought Leaders, Entrepreneurs, members of the Australian Parliament and Senate, Corporate leaders, educationists, and Spiritual Leaders including Mr Julian Hill, Member of Australian Parliament; Manpreet Vohra, Indian High Commissioner to Australia; S. Satnam Singh Sandhu, Chief Patron, NID Foundation and Chancellor, Chandigarh University; Prof Himani Sood, Founder NID Foundation; Mr Joseph Haweil, Councillor for Aitken Ward, Hume City; Mr Josh Gilligan, Councillor for Chaffey Ward, Wyndham; Mr Naim Kurt, Councillor at Hume City Council and Mr Matthew Hilakari, Labor candidate for Point Cook and former senior policy advisor, were present. (ANI)