March 1, 2012

A Publication of the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO)

Issue: XI-4 March 1, 2012
Join Our List
Join Our Mailing List
In This Issue
Quick Links

NOTE: GOPIO News is a FREE bi-monthly newsletter of GOPIO International, based in the USA. We need your help in reaching out more NRIs/PIOs around the world. Please go to the bottom of the news bulletin and click the FORWARD button and type e-mail addresses of your friends and relatives. One could also subscribe this newsletter by visiting and type in the e-mail address. All preivous issues of GOPIO News are provided at GOPIO News Archives. If you do not wish to receive this newsletter in future, please click SafeUnsubscribe at the end of this newsletter.


GOPIO is a community supported non-profit organization taking up issues of the Indian Diaspora and attempting to unifying the community in its common causes. Support GOPIO by becoming a Life Member or chapter member. Once can become Life Member online by visiting


Gujarat University's Department of Study Abroad Program (SAP) and Global Organization of People of Indian origin (GOPIO) jointly organized an international conference on 12th and 13th January, 2012 at Gujarat University Convention Center, Ahmedabad, India.


Another significant event took place on the eve of the conference with the launch of GOPIO-Ahmedabad Chapter in association with SAP on January 11th.


GOPIO Life Members at GOPIO-Ahmedabad launch

Photo above: GOPIO International members at GOPIO-Ahmedabad launch. From L. to R: Dr. Mohan Gautam, Radha Krishan, Dhiraj Solanki, Sudha Parekh, Dr. Thomas Abraham, GOPIO-Ahmedabad Coordinator Dr. Neerja Arun, Nirmal Singh and Chandu Patel.


The idea of conference initiated two years earlier by GOPIO's former Academic Council Chairman Dr. Jagat Motwani, who along with SAP Coordinator Dr. Neerja Arun, decided to design the conference which would be based on the concept of impact of Indian Diaspora which has motivated its homeland to map its history and factors for migration. Concerns for economic, political, cultural and social engagements of Indian Diaspora have been widely shown in the society. It also brought sociologists and researchers to look into the process of migration and found themselves into pondering upon the trends of Indian Diaspora.


The considerable presence of Indian Diaspora in almost all parts of the world and its insistence upon sending success stories back home in all spheres inspired homeland India to connect with her Diaspora with renewed passion.


The conference was divided into different themes and considerations. Mainly issues of information and computer technology, infrastructure, education, research and technology, finance and banking, spirituality, literature, art & culture that need serious considerations of partnership with Indian Diaspora were represented, shared and discussed. Policy-makers with both domestic and internationalremittancesare appreciating the two-way linkages between Diasporas and their home regions. Hence possible participations from the stakeholders from both sides were discussed with active participation in the proceeding.


The conference had plenary, panel discussion and parallel sessions on following themes:


  1. Here and there: merging spheres
  2. Transforming the local with global initiatives
  3. Funders' agenda: pitching ideas for development
  4. Role of Indian Diaspora in re-conceiving and reconstituting faith in physical and virtual places of spiritualism: India and Abroad
  5. Literary and cultural Concerns 

As the pre-onset of the conference, Gujarat Chief Minister Shri Narendra Modi declared at the Gujarat Session of PBD, Jaipur, India about the conference that Gujarat University was going to create a bridge between its Diaspora and Gujarat through this conference. He stated that, "Gujarat University is creating an intellectual bridge through this international conference on Indian Diaspora for its program of Diaspora with India".


On 11th January 2012 Chief Minister Modi invited the GOPIO delegation at International Kite Festival and spent time exclusively discussing the positive role of Diaspora and their potential contributions to India and Gujarat in particular. Dr Thomas Abraham, Dr Neerja Arun, Mr C. K. Patel, Ms. Sudha Parekh, Mr. Radha Krishnan, Mr Dhiraj Solanki and Mr. Neil Patel, represented GOPIO and Gujarat University. CM Modi extended his best wishes for the conference and gave his special message which was included in the conference brochure. In his message, CM Modi said the conference and GOPIO Chapter in Ahmedabad launch would become a conduit to deliver services to the local community by utilizing resources from the Global Indian community, functioning within the guidelines and for the objectives of GOPIO International.


"SAP and Gujarat University shall provide a major support and local mechanism to provide a forum and an opportunity to network for NRIs, who are settling back in India, NRI parents and those who have business, technology and educational interest to reach out to NRIs," CM Modi continued in his message.


Gujarat Governor Dr. Shrimati Kamla also sent a message to the organizers welcoming the launch of GOPIO chapter in Ahmedabad and hoped that the new chapter would provide opportunities to share ideas and interests of common interest with visiting NRIs and help in social, community and philanthropic causes of the local community.


On Jan. 11th, 2012, GOPIO-Ahmedabad chapter was launched for the first time in Gujarat in association with Gujarat University (refer to GOPIO News, February 5th, 2012). GOPIO chapter and Gujarat University would be working towards achieving the objectives and mission of GOPIO by creating a forum and opportunities to network for NRIs and NRGs who are settling back in India.


The launch of the Gujarat chapter of Gujarat was well organized to coincide with the two day international conference titled India Diaspora and Inter Linkages and Synergy organized by Gujarat University's Study Abroad Program (SAP) and GOPIO on Jan. 12th and 13th. Dr. Neerja Arun, Director of the Study Abroad Program, Gujarat University; GOPIO Founder President Dr. Thomas Abraham and Dr. Jagat Motwani of GOPIO Academic Council were the organizers and chairpersons of the conference.


The conference was inaugurated on Jan. 12th at the Senate Hall by Mr. J. C. Sharma, former secretary at the Ministry of External Affairs, and Gujarat University Vice-Chancellor Dr. Parimal H. Trivedi, who was also the patron of the conference. Mr. Sharma was the keynote speaker. Gujarat University Pro-Vice Chancellor Dr. Mukul Shah and Registrar Minesh Shah were special guests.


The inauguration session was well attended by the Diaspora and local guests. The program started with welcome address by Dr. Neerja Arun who spoke on the Study Abroad Program of Gujarat University which has currently 237 students at its campus. She also spoke on the university's thrust on Indian Diaspora studies with several post graduate students enrolled in this program. The conference was inaugurated by lighting of the lamp by Mr J.C. Sharma, Vice Chancellor Trivedi, Dr. Thomas Abraham and Pro-Vice Chancellor Dr. Mukul Shah.


GOPIO-Gujarat Univ. Indian Diaspora Conf. Inauguration

Photo above: GOPIO-Gujart Unviersity Indian Diaspora Conference Inauguration with Singing of the Indian National Anthem, From L. to R.: Dr. Neerja Arun, Dr Mukul Shah, Dr. Thomas Abraham, Dr. Parimal H Trivedi, J C Sharma, Mr Minesh Shah, Paavan Pandit, Urmi Satyan


At the inaugural address, Mr. Sharma reiterated the need to understand the vastness and timely importance of contribution of the Indian Diaspora. He gave the examples of Chinese Diaspora and their roles in homeland development and also insisted that PBD should not remain a get together function.


Vice Chancellor Trivedi reiterated the importance of Gujarat University interacting and networking with the Indian Diaspora. He said that the organizations such as GOPIO can help Gujarat University increase the number of foreign students and help from academics in the US and other countries to serve as post graduate students' advisors.


Dr. Abraham presented a history of the overseas Indian movement and how GOPIO started playing a role in campaigning against human rights violations of Indians worldwide. He further said that human rights issues are not the major thrust for GOPIO and that the organization is playing an important in pooling professional and financial resources of NRIs and PIOs for common good of the Indian Diaspora, countries of their origin and India.

GOPIO-Gujarat Unvi. Inauguration with GOPIO members, digntaries and organizers  

Photo Above: GOPIO-Gujarat University Conference Inauguration Group - GOPIO Life Members, overseas delegates, dignitaries and organizers


The conference felicitated many community activists who have made their impact and considerable contribution in the field of Indian Diaspora. The following personalities who were present at the conference were facilitated during the inaugural session: GOPIO Founding Members Dhiraj Solanki, Sudha Parekh, Radha Krishnan and Nirmal Sinha; Chandubhai Patel, Chairman, NFIA Foundation, USA; Dr Kavita Sharma, Director, India Intl. Ctr.; Mr. Sunil Nayak, USA and Mr. Neil Patel, FIA Columbus, USA.


The plenary session after the inauguration was on the theme 'Indian Diaspora Linkages'. The session was chaired by Mr Chandubhai Patel wherein the speakers were: Dr. Kavita Sharma, Director Indian International Center in New Delhi and Dr. Thomas Abraham of GOPIO International. Dr. Sharma provided an academic view of the Indian Diaspora migration and how Indian can benefit from them. Dr. Abraham spoke on how GOPIO has been providing a platform and networking opportunities to the Indian Diaspora communities as to engage them with India and in the process mobilize Diaspora's professional and financial resources to benefit India. His presentation further brought out GOPIO's role in the Indian Diaspora movement and discussed mutual expectations between NRIs/PIOs and India.


The plenary session was followed two parallel sessions with Session A chaired by Prof. Bipin Sagankar of USA and Co-chaired by Mr. S L Wickramasinghe. In this session Mr. Issar G Totlani, Vice President of NRI parents Association in Vadodara spoke on 'Concern of NRI Parents Association Towards Indian Diaspora'. In this session, Mr Jagat Motwani's paper 'Education and Diaspora - Tagore on Hindu Concept of Education' was read by Mr. Paavan Pandit. Dr. Mukesh Bagoria gave his views on 'India's Linkages with Its Diaspora: A case study of Indian Diaspora in USA.' The second parallel session was chaired by Mr. Nirmal Sinha. Among the speakers were, Prof. Mohan Gautam of The Netherlands who spoke on 'Europe Experience of Education.


Another session witnessed a discussion over issues related to cultural diversity and communication. Speakers included Dr. Abraham; Mr Nirmal Sinha, former president of FIA Columbus and former director of National Federation of Indian-American Associations (NFIA); Mr Chandubhai Patel and Neil Patel, an NRI who is running as a candidate for Ohio State Senate.


The panel discussion on the theme 'Here and There - Merging Sphere' was chaired by Mr. J C Sharma with Mr Neil Patel as Co-Chair. The participants of this Panel Discussion were Dr. Kavita Sharma, Mr. Nirmal Sinha and Dr. Neerja Arun. There were two parallel sessions under the theme 'Here and There - Merging Spheres.' The first session was chaired by Dr. Sanjeev Sharma, Prof. & Head, Political Science, Meerut University and co-chaired by Ms. Lalita Joshi of Prasar Bharati. In this session Dr. Vijyalaxmi Chari (Professor and Reader, S.D. School of Commerce, Gujarat University ) and Ms. Nirali Pandit (Gujarat University) shared their views on 'Diaspora and Business Linkages' while Dr. Neerja Arun delivered her views on 'Connecting spiritually.' She reiterated the role of Indian Diaspora in spreading spiritual identity of India in more constructive manner.


Photo below: Panel on Merging Spheres. from L. to R.: Dr Rajiv Ranjan Rai, Dr. Khyati Joshi, Sudha Parekh, Dr. Arundhati Bhattacharya

GOPIO-Gujarat Unviersity Conf. Sessions on Merging Spheres

 Photo above: Session on Indian Diaspora Linkages, from L. to R.:  Lalitha Joshi, Dr. Sanjeev Sharma, Dr. Neerja Arun, Dr. Vijayalaxmi Chari and Nirali Pandit.


The second session was chaired by Ms. Sudha Parekh, a veteran community activist from New York. The first paper in this session was, 'Extension of Homeland Civilization and Flow of Indian Traditions towards Transnational Locations: Emerging Sacred Spheres in Mauritius Indian Diaspora' by Mr Rajeev Ranjan Rai (Asst. Professor of Diaspora Studies at Mahatma Gandhi Antarrastriya Hindi Vishwaidyalaya, Wardha, Maharashtra). Dr. Khyati Joshi (Associate professor of Education at Fairleigh Dickinson University, USA) presented her views on 'Role of Religion in Indian Diaspora' where as Dr. Arundhati Bhattacharya (Assistant Professor and Head of Political Science Department, Bhairab Ganguly College, Kolkata) spoke on 'Marriages with Non-Resident Indians and Its Repercussions'. The Last paper in this session was presented on 'Indian Cinema; windows of Nostalgia and adaptation for Diaspora' by Shailendra Kumar.


The final session for the first day was a plenary Session which was chaired by Dr. Supriya Agrawal and included guest speaker Mrs. Sandhya Sinha (Chairperson, Women's Political Forum, India and a Small-Scale Industry Entrepreneur) who spoke on the theme 'Position of Women and Diasporic Influence'.


The first day conference concluded with a magnificent performance classical Indian music by Saptak School of Music from Ahmedabad.


Day Two started with Kite Flying at the vast field of the university outside convention center. The first Plenary Session for the day started at 9.45 a.m., chaired by Dr. Thomas Abraham under the theme 'Funders' Agenda-Pitching ideas for development.' In this session Dr. Prabhakar depicted his views on 'SRI project' in Kerala, while Mr. K. Narahari Rao (Assistant General Manager of the State Bank of India), spoke on investing opportunities with India and its Banks. Dr. Chirag Shah (Director, Department of Hematology. Oncology, Stem Cell Transplant, Apollo Hospital, Ahmedabad) spoke on possible funding for medical temples. He said that each religion talks of charity and in Indian philosophy we take body as a temple.



"Its high time now that people start donating for medical temples in India and such initiatives shall bring quality and abundance in treatments in cancer treatment," said Dr. Shah. Dr. Shah also informed how ill served was the medical field due to the lack of people and funds and expertise in medical fields. Under this session and theme, the last talk was presented was by Nirmal Sinha, a community leader from the U.S. He spoke on the efforts of the Indian Diaspora in research initiatives.




Photo below: Session on Pitching Ideas for Development, from L. to R.: Nirmal Sinha, Dr. Chirag Shah, Dr Thomas Abraham, Mr. Rao, Prabhakar from SRI

GOPIO-Gujarat Univ. Conf. - Sessions on Funders' Agenda

Photo above: Session on Funder's Agenda, from L. to R.: Prof. Bipin Sagankar, Dr. M. K. Pandey, Dr. Indira Nityanandam, Dr. V. Chari, Dr. Swati Kapadia, Dr Naresh Kumar





The next session's theme was 'Synergy' and was chaired by Dr. V. Chari. The speakers were Dr. M. K, Pandey, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs and Prof. Bipin Sagankar of the U.S. Dr. Pandey gave a detailed account of Government of India's initiatives towards the Diaspora.


As per the schedule, two parallel sessions were held on this theme, 'Synergy.' The session in Hall "A" was chaired by Dr. Indira Nityanandam (Principal, S.R. Mehta Arts College, Ahmedabad). Panelist Dr. Nisheeth Rai spoke on 'Conceptualizing and Developing Diasporaism'. According to him term 'Diasporaism' (as socio-cultural, politico-economic religious networks with homeland) describes a condition in which, despite great distances and notwithstanding the presence of international borders (and all the laws, regulations and national narratives they represent), certain kinds of relationships persist towards homeland which have been intensified globally in virtual and real world.


The second presentation was on 'Prevalence of Diabetes in the Indian Diaspora: Successful Community-Based Prevention and Management Programs in India' by Dr. Thakor G. Patel (Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine at the Uniformed Services of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland) who had served the U.S. Navy for 23 years and is currently in Sevak Project of American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI). He presented detailed data on the global burden of diabetes mellitus which is more pronounced in India and migrant Asian Indians as they have high rates of type 2 diabetes (T2DM) and related complications in the United States. The presentation further described the higher prevalence of T2DM among 1038 randomly selected Asian Indian immigrants in the U.S (17.4%), and 1082 Indians in India (8.4 % and 13.6% in rural and urban Indians, respectively). The prevalence of metabolic syndrome, using the International Diabetes Federation criteria, was 38.2%, 39.2% and 10.5% among U.S. Asian Indians, Urban Indians and rural Indians respectively. Results provided evidence that rural Indians have significantly lower rate of diabetes, pre-diabetes, and obesity as compared to urban Indians and immigrant Asian Indians in the US.  

Dr. Swati Kapadia (Bhavan's Sheth R.A. College of Arts and Commerce) depicted her views on 'Indian Diaspora and Indian Classical Music'. She said that Indian classical music travelled abroad to widen its range of audience with its native masters who started performing on the foreign land. Slowly and gradually, some of the masters migrated to foreign lands and became a part of the Indian Diaspora. She brought out the evolution of Indian classical music in the West, assessed the target audience, i.e. (1) the Indian Diaspora and (2) the mainstream West. Focusing on the increasing taste for Indian classical music, Kapadia spoke on the role of Indian Diaspora in the development of Indian classical music in the West and giving a new shape to Indian classical music by fusing it with the West. With Indian Diaspora, the Indian classical music has acquired not only a new identity in India as well as in the West; it has entered the canon of globalization with a global appeal.

The second parallel session in Hall "B" was chaired by US community and political activist Niranjan Patel and co-chaired by Mrs. Vaishali Padhiar (Development Officer, Gujarat University). In an interesting presentation, Dr. Z. N. Patil (Prof. and Head of English Department, English and Foreign Language University, Hyderabad) portrayed his vision on 'Legitimating New Varieties of English'. According to Dr. Patil, the global spread of English has generated varying perspectives on the nature and functions of its acculturated varieties. Broadly speaking, the debate has divided scholars into two camps holding diametrically opposing views on the multiple versions of English. On the one hand, some scholars view variations as symptoms of linguistic degeneration and deterioration; on the other hand, some scholars legitimize them as inevitable manifestations necessitated by the demands of the new cultural contexts. In this session Dr. Sanjeev Sharma presented the paper of Ms. Reshmi Ramdhony of Mauritius 'Mere Aankhon mein basa sheher: Banaras.'


Another panelist Dr. Geeta Patil talked on the theme: 'Here and There: Writing Formation and Transformation of National Consciousness.' Her views concluded that literature is not only the community of national sentiment but also a way where writers can present splits and contest earlier narratives to present alternatives. Not only does literature write nations into being; but it also re-interprets and re-directs them. Literature has a space for different directions, clash, fall and strive to continue. 


Gujarat university organizers with GOPIO officials

 Photo above: GOPIO-Gujarat University Diaspora Conference organizing team. From L. to R.: Sahil, Ravjit, Aarif, Sudha Parekh, Dr. Neerja Arun, Dr. Thomas Abraham, Bhavesh, Hiral and Urmi Satyan




The post luncheon session started with a plenary session at under the theme 'Virtual and Spiritual places' was chaired by Ms. Sandhya Sinha, a NGO activist from New Delhi and Co-chaired by Dr. Anjana Sandheer (Poetess, Writer and lecturer at Gujarat Vidyapith, Ahmedabad). A book 'Hindi Mein Bolo - Speak in Hindi' by Dr. Sandhir was released at this session. This was followed with a panel discussion, chaired by Mr. Ashok Motwani (GOPIO Life Member and Founder of Diaspora network news) and on the theme 'Transforming Local with Global.' Under this panel were Prof. Mr. M.K. Gautam of Netherlands, Ms. Sandhya Sinha and Dr. Z.N. Patil.


Two parallel sessions followed with the theme 'Transforming Local with Global.' The first was chaired by Dr. Rajeev Ranjan Rai. Mrs. Vishali Padhiyar (Development Officer, Gujarat University), spoke on 'Networking for Global Promotion of Handicraft of Gujarat.' In her paper, Padhiyar said that the effects of cultural richness are reflected in the handicrafts of the country. Various and diverse craft forms are accomplished in the different regions and states of India depending on the traditions and values practiced by people. According to Padhiyar, Gujarat is famous for its rich and diverse variety of handicrafts. This traditional crafts, acts as a tool of source of livelihood and income for lakhs of artisans especially women artisans in rural Gujarat. Gujarat has more than two lakhs artisans engaged in different types and forms of handicrafts. These artisans are organised in Self Helped Groups (SHGs), NGOs, small enterprises, private companies, etc. However they lack an international network to promote the rich handicrafts at Global level. This would not only be an exercise in marketing but also a transmission of the rich traditional Gujarati culture across the world. Globalisation refers to growing integration of societies, economies and cultures around the world. As India opens up to multinationals and liberalised market, it is not only the economies that meet in the global market spheres but also the people and cultures, which brings a new dimension to the multi-cultural setting. There is always a cross cultural interaction between the local and the global. The Handicraft sector constitutes a significant segment in the economy and is in demand in the western world.


The paper of Ms. Vidhya Rao "Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani" followed. According to Rao, identity for any individual is always multifarious. One needs to change and adapt to a constantly changing identity which varies according to one's circumstances and needs. When we talk of an Indian identity there never can be an exclusive or a singular identity. Hence, it is natural and a matter of convenience as well that the specific Indian identity is invoked in certain unequivocal contexts only. It is but natural that the Indian diaspora who inherently possess collective identities will have a relevance and importance depending upon their sensitivities. They are forced to do a tightrope balancing act when they juggle between their various identities which, willingly or unwillingly, are thrust upon them. The Indian diaspora has to specifically deal with plurality of identities which grants them a sense of pride, a matter of honour and a feeling of happiness. They are forced to make choices and attach preferences to their micro and macro identities.


Panelist Ms. Supriya Agarwal depicted her views on "mobility, connectivity and imagination in a multicultural world". According to Ms Agarwal, the movement of people across national borders, referred to as international migration is viewed as a global challenge for the present century. The mobility of capital and the inevitable expansion of markets has brought about a change in economies, territories, sovereignty and in turn affected imagination and creativity in the world which has become multicultural. Ms. Agarwal explored the process of defining and better understanding of the Diasporic phenomenon in relation to identity, ethnicity and the expansion of the universal humanitarianism. The concept of Diaspora in the new perception refers to complex multidirectional flow of human beings, ideas, products and an interaction of culture, social norms and values. As Avtar Brah has pointed out that the notion of home and Diaspora is premised not merely on the power of nostalgia but is a process of inclusion and struggle over the social regulation of belongings or as Benedict Anderson had called "imagined communities" by enhancing the concept of the diasporic phenomena. Ms Agarwal further focused on the Diasporic cultures upon which multiple and diverse processes of identity and community are constructed, producing narratives and discourses that reproduce and sustain relevant frames of self-identification.


Dr. Naresh Kumar (Assistant Professor, Center for Diasporic Studies, Central University of Gujarat, Gandhinagar) talked on 'Migration -Development Interface: Policy Intervention and Role of Indian Diaspora Associations in North America.'


The second parallel session on 'Transforming Local with Global' was chaired by Dr. Anjana Sandheer. Panelist Ms. Lalita Joshi talked about 'Media and Diaspora.' Mr. Pranav Joshipura spoke on 'Bhopal: The tragedy from over". Bhopal is the powerful play written by a well known Canadian Indian theatre exponent Rahul Verma. The play is based on the 1984 Union Carbide disaster happened at the city of Bhopal in Central India.


Dr. Siba Shankar Mohanty (Assistant Professor, Center for Diasporic Studies, Central University of Gujarat, Gandhinagar) depicted his views on 'Crossing the Kala Pani: The Neo-Slaves in the Caribbean'. The (harsh) space of the indenture ships, plantation estates and plantation barracks in which Indian indentured labours were exported (like cargos), worked and herded respectively in the sugar colonies of the West Indies, and other parts of the world, and the traumatic experience of these displaced migrants in these three sites stands as the basic strands in the socio-cultural imaginary of these people. The itinerant approach of the indigenous population towards their life and settlement, and their unfamiliarity with hard work as required of the plantation estates, and subsequently the abolition of African Slavery in the 1830s gave a severe blow to the European industrial, commercial and imperialist ventures and expansion, especially in the sugar plantations of the West Indies. With its huge destitute population, stricken by drought and famine, India became a source of stable and manageable labour force on plantations in the Caribbean, Mauritius, Fiji and other parts of the world. The presence of British colonial administration in India was an added factor that further speeded up the rate of migration of labour force. The impoverishment, suffering, socio-cultural estrangement and alienation, and destitution forced the people to take the difficult decision of crossing the kala pani (dark waters of the sea), even at the risk of the loss of the religion (for Hindus). There are estimates that during this period of indentureship from 1830s to 1920s over one and a half million Indians went overseas to the Caribbean, Fiji, Africa, Burma, Malaya, and the Pacific islands.


A concluding session was held where speakers for both sessions 'Funders Agenda' and 'Transforming Local with Global' presented outcomes from the sessions.


Dr. Anjan Sandhi'r book released and Dr. Neerja Arun honored.

Photo above left, from L. to R.: Dr. Anjan Sandhir's book Hindi Mein Bolo is being released. From L. to R.: Dr. Sandhir, Dr. Thomas Abraham, Dr. Neerja Arun and Dr. Mohan Gautam.  Photo above right, Dr. Neerja Arun felicitated with GOPIO memento, from L. to R.: Dr. M. K. Pandey, Dr. Mukul Shah, Dr. Thomas Abraham, Dr. Neerja Arun




After this last session the international conference ended up with the valedictory function. Dr. Mukul Shah, the Pro-Vice Chancellor of Gujarat University was the chief guest and keynote speaker. With him the dais was shared by Mr. M K Pandey, Dr Thomas Abraham, Dr Neerja Arun and Mr K H Patel. The function ended with a success reward by all the participants present in the function.





Watch the inaugural session and the evening music program by Saptak School of at the conference by clicking the following links:


Vice Chancellor Prof. Parimal Trivedi Speaks at the Inaugural Session -


Former MEA Secretary J.C. Sharma Speaks at the Inaugural Session -


GOPIO Founder President Dr. Thomas Abraham Speaks at the Inaugural Session -


GOPIO Life Member Chandu Patel being honored -


GOPIO Life Member Nirmal Sinha being honored -


Community Leaders Sunil Nayak, Neil Patel, Sudha Parekh, Mohan Gautam

and Dhiraj Solanki Are Being Honored -


India International Center Director Dr. Kavita Sharma being honored -


GOPIO Founder President Dr. Thomas Abraham Speaks at the Session on

Indian Diaspora Linkages -


Cultural Performance by Saptak School of Music -,,,,,


Kite Flying Festival in Ahmedabad, Jan. 11, 2012


Gujarat Kite Flying Festival, Jan 11, 2012 in Ahmedabad. Cultural

Program -


Gujarat Kite Flying Festival, Jan 11, 2012-Chief Minister Narendra Modi

Speaking -


Gujarat Kite Flying Festival, Jan 11, 2012-Governor . Shrimati Kamla

Speaking -



Contact: Dr. Neerja Arun, Coordinator, GOPIO Ahmedabad, Tel: +91-79-25600312/25600311 Fax: +91-79-25601314, +91 9825012984 (cell), E-mail: 



GOPIO is taking the initiative for a Gadar Centennial Commemoration for a global commemoration of the upcoming 100th anniversary of the Gadar movement in 2013 involving various agencies, organizations and institutions. GOPIO has developed tentative plans and would finalize these plans shortly after the meetings of Centennial Commemoration Committee with invitations to all persons, agencies, organizations and institutions interested in participating in the upcoming centennial event(s) in 2013.


In 1913, the Hindustan Association of the Pacific Coast (USA) was started to free India from the British serfdom. The association started publishing magazine named Gadar to expose the British imperialism and called upon the Indian people to unite and rise up against British rule. The publication Gadar, over a period of time, became well known among Indians and the Hindustan Association of the Pacific Coast itself became known as the Gadar party. In 2003, the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO), the National Federation of Indian American Associations (NFIA) and the Global Punjabi Diaspora jointly organized the 90th anniversary of Gadar movement to pay tribute to the pioneers, patriots and heroes of the Gadar movement.


The plans for the Gadar Centennial Commemoration include participation and support of Office of the Prime Minister of India, Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs; Ministry of External Affairs, Ministry of Culture, UNESCO, State of California, City of San Francisco, as well as Indian civic organizations, institutions, groups and individuals. Plans include: Declare 2013 as the year of Centennial Commemoration of Gadar Movement; Issue a suitably designed postage stamp commemorating the Gadar Movement; Publish a historic Centennial Commemoration book about the Gadar Movement, sacrifices of the Gadar Heroes, brief bio-data (if available) of all the 48 martyrs and 69 Gadarites who were given life imprisonment, for free distribution to libraries, schools, institutions and organizations; Establish chairs in memory of the Gadar heroes in India and at least one or more in the USA. Plans for Gadar Centennial Commemoration 2012/2013 include: Gadar Centennial Commemoration per city: Forum in several cities in USA, Canada, UK, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, India, with a finale in San Francisco with a fitting memorial as a lasting tribute to the Gadar heroes.


Contacts: GOPIO Chairman Inder Singh @; GOPIO President Ashook Ramsaran @ 





With effect from 2012, the IRS has introduced 'Form 8938 - Statement of Specified Foreign Financial Assets' to be filed along with the income tax return. That is, all those filing their tax returns of 2011 will have to include Form 8938, if applicable to them. This form, which has already earned synonyms like 'Son of FBAR' and 'FBAR Turbo,' will be in addition to the already existing requirement of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts Report (FBAR) that must be filed by June 30th each year.


 The IRS is tracking foreign accounts in all countries, but thanks to recent indictments of account holders in countries like Switzerland and India (several HSBC India account holders have been indicted), there could be increased focus on these countries.

Under the new riles, one has to report all your share holdings, mutual fund holdings, ULIP and insurance policy holdings, pension plans and bank balances in India.

Specified foreign financial assets do not include physical assets such as gold and real estate. However, if gold is held in the form of ETFs, it would be included as specified foreign financial asset.


The reporting thresholds that apply are as follows: - Unmarried taxpayers living in the US: The total value of your specified foreign financial assets is more than $50,000 on the last day of the tax year or more than $75,000 at any time during the tax year - Married taxpayers filing a joint income tax return and living in the US: The total value of your specified foreign financial assets is more than $100,000 on the last day of the tax year or more than $150,000 at any time during the tax year - Married taxpayers filing separate income tax returns and living in the US: The total value of your specified foreign financial assets is more than $50,000 on the last day of the tax year or more than $75,000 at any time during the tax year. - Taxpayers living abroad: You are filing a return other than a joint return and the total value of your specified foreign assets is more than $200,000 on the last day of the tax year or more than $300,000 at any time during the year or you are filing a joint return and the value of your specified foreign asset is more than $400,000 on the last day of the tax year or more than $600,000 at any time during the year.

What is the due date for filing Form 8939? Form 8938 must be filed along with your income tax return. For US tax year 2011, the due date is April 17th 2012.

Form 8938 is in addition to FBAR. In recent years, the IRS has increased its focus on tracking offshore accounts for possible tax evasion. This new Form 8938 is just one more measure in that direction. In short, today, if you are a US resident or US citizen with bank and financial accounts in countries outside the US, you will have several reports to file. Your US tax return, 1040, itself has questions about your foreign financial interests in Schedule B. Then you have this new Form 8938 that must be filed along with your tax return. And finally you have the FBAR that must be filed by June 30th each year for the previous tax year.

While Form 8938 itself is not very complicated, the filing process might be cumbersome. For instance, while reporting share holdings in Indian companies in Part II of form 8938, you would need to list each company's holding separately giving details of not just the shareholding but address of the company, dividends received and where you reported the income on your 1040. Consult a professional to make sure you don't leave out any important details.


See detailed article in Times of India at








With an overwhelming support from the people of Sydney, more than 250 guests attended GOPIO Sydney North West's Caring & Sharing Charity Dinner Night on 24th December 2011 at Sapphire Function Centre, Auburn. Over $2500 was raised by the event and these funds will be used to purchase winter clothing and fans for every classroom for the kids in Govt. Middle School in village Ganja, District Gurdaspur, India. Last year also, GOPIO Sydney North West had provided warm clothes, shoes and hand pump for clean drinking water to help underprivileged school kids of Govt. Middle school, village Warra-Pohwindia, Zira, Distt. Ferozepur, India.


The program at Caring & Sharing Charity Dinner started with Vande Matraum by Sunanda Sharma while other attractions were songs performances by Rajesh Batra, Meena ji, Arun Joshi, Bhangra dance by two teams namely Platinum Entertainment and Rooh Punjab Di, humorous shayari by Harmohan Singh Walia, skit by Ravi & Raj, Bollywood dance, DJ Disco Waves and abundant food from Sapphire Function Centre. Tambola winnings were the other highlights of the event. Thanks to Rajesh Batra's skillful control of numbers.



Photo above: Bhangra Dancers at the fundraiser


Guests were welcomed by the chapter president, Neeru Singh. Aman Singh, Neeru Singh and Harinder Kaur delightfully managed the stage and their commentary was applauded by all. Raj and Ravi effectively managed the guest list and their seating arrangement. Harmohan Singh Walia, Prof. Balkar Singh Kang, Baljit Singh Pelia, Harminder Singh along with the rest of the team worked tirelessly to make this event a great success.


GOPIO Sydney North West team heartily congratulated & thanked sponsors and honored them with trophies.


GOPIO Northwest Fundraiser organizers 

Photo Above: GOPIO Northwest Fundraiser organizers, from L. to R. Prof. Balkar Singh Kang, Ravinder Singh, Neeru Singh, Harry Walia, Harinder Kaur, Rajvinder Singh, Aman Singh, Baljit Pelia


GOPIO-Sydney North West also conducted its annual election on February 5th. The following are the new officers:


President - Mr. Ravinder Singh, Vice President - Prof. Balkan Singh Kang, Secretatry - Ms. Aman Singh, Asst. Secretary - Mrs. Harinder Kaur and Treasurer - Mr. Baljit Singh Pelia.


Contact GOPIO-North West: Ravinder Singh, President, Tel: +61-433-179-303, or Aman Singh, Secretary, Tel: + 61-433-512-519,




GOPIO of Netherlands is holding a 1-day conference on "Transformations in Entrepreneurship, Management and Society" on March 17th 2012 at the Nyenrode Business University in Breukelen, The Netherlands. The objective of the conference is to bring together a diversity of women and men from various fields of interest and areas, to raise awareness of the major global changes the world is facing today and provide an opportunity to reflect upon possible solutions for the New Economy. It will explore and focus on ways to realize a more civil, empowered, sustainable and balanced society, in particular, the role women play in the New Economy.


Keynote speakers will be Hon. Baroness Sandeep Verma of the House of Lords of the United Kingdom, and Mr. Jos de Blok, a role model of Social Entrepreneurship from the Netherlands. Hon. Verma is Lords Minister for Business, Innovation and Skills (Higher Education), Equalities and Women. Mr. Jos de Blok, Founder of Buurtzorg, will share how he has realized transformations in the Elderly Home Care Industry through an innovative and sound business model in countries such as Sweden, USA, Japan and China.


The PROGRAM for this Conference is planned as follows:

Welcome & Registration

9:30-10:00: Keynote addresses

  • Baroness Verma, Lords Minister for Business Innovation and Skills, Equalities and Women and the Whip for the Cabinet Office, Govt. of U.K.
  • Jos de Blok, Founder of Buurtzorg Nederland, Best Employer of the Year 2011 in the Netherlands

10:00-12:15: Morning Session

  • Opening address by Prof. Dr. Leen Paape, Dean Nyenrode Business University
  • Introduction by Dr. Sharda Nandram, Professor
  • Entrepreneurship, Women Committee, GOPIO Holland


13:30-15:00: Afternoon Session

Transformational workshops on:

Work Life Balance

  • New Perspectives on Entrepreneurship
  • Entrepreneurship and Practical Advices
  • Leadership and Enterprising Behavior
  • Empowerment and Practical Advices

15:30-16:30: Reflection & Closing

Drs. Rajindre Tewari, GOPIO International, Regional Coordinator Europe


Confirmed Workshop Speakers:Annette del Prado, MHD, Lic; Drs. Danny Sandra; Drs. F?lice van Hooff; Prof. Dr. Ir. Iteke Weeda; Jozef Badal, Consultant; Mahesvari Autar, Journalist; Marjon Steenbeek, Trainer;Drs. Piet Lagerwaard; Shanta Bhikharie, Trainer; Drs. Sheela Vyas; Sherita Narain, MSc in Law; Tanja Jadnanansing, MSc in Law; Tineke Cieraard, Trainer; Vipin Moharir, MBA.


Moderator: Ir. Manish Dixit, GOPIO of Rotterdam

Conference Fee: 60 Euros

Contact: Ilse Dannen (Event Coordinator) +31(0) 26-369-1109 (website:




Following the initiative by GOPIO President Ashook Ramsaran who met with United Nation's Women Organization (UN Women Org) in New York, GOPIO Women's Council chairperson Suman Kapoor (New Zealand) is collaborating with Ms Mitushi Das of Strategic Partnerships Division (SPD) of UN Women Org. GOPIO is exploring steps towards a mutually supportive, collaborative and beneficial partnership between UN Women and GOPIO as it continues to monitor and address critical issues faced by women primarily in the Indian Diaspora. These include shared interests of UN Women's platform, outreach and objectives as well as GOPIO Women's Council agenda while exploring possibilities for increased outreach and advocacy.


GOPIO Women's Council is planning a GOPIO conference on women's issues to be scheduled later this year, and Ms Kapoor is collaborating with Rae Julian, President of the UN Women National Committee in New Zealand. As a first step, UN Women Org plans to provide suitably qualified UN Women representatives to speak at the next event to be held by GOPIO Women Council.


Contact for more details: GOPIO Women's Council chairperson Suman Kapoor (New Zealand)




GOPIO is actively involved in supporting meaningful and significant revisions to the proposed redistricting maps for the State Assembly districts in New York State, in particular the assembly district lines proposed by the LATFOR Redistricting Task Force affecting the South Asian community of Richmond Hill, Ozone Park and Woodhaven in Queens, New York. The consensus among community leaders is that the proposed assembly district lines "would sever a contiguous, compact, and cohesive community in 6 ways, thereby depriving us of fair, equitable and effective representation of people with similar backgrounds and interests, with shared culture, history, aspirations and community spirit. We are a community of people with shared values and shared concerns, and we insist on a singular district in order to maintain our community area intact socially, culturally, economically and politically" according to a letter unified community letter sent to New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo.


The revisions are fully supported by all segments and the entire cross section of the community because of the adverse effects were it to remain as proposed. GOPIO Upper New York chapter representative Naidoo Veerapen participates in the planning meetings for the unified community group.At a Redistricting Hearing held on February 7, 2012 at Queens Borough Hall, GOPIO International President Ashook Ramsaran gave testimony for GOPIO's support of the revisions, citing guarantees by UN Charter, the US Constitution and precedence, stating that "it is critical to keep a unified, compact district with natural and sensible boundaries; the demographics and population statistics clearly confirm the need for retaining the community politically intact, and provide the supporting means for its own representation at all city and state levels".


Speakers from the South Asian & Indo Caribbean Community at February 7, 2012 Redistricting Hearing included: Darrel Sukdeo (AARI); Amrita Kilawan (FLS); Rachana Shah (Taking Our Seat); Vishnu Mahadeo (RHEDC); Richard David (ICA); Albert Baldeo (Attorney); Rohan Narine (TMM); Ashook Ramsaran (GOPIO); Ali Najmi (SEVA); Kawal Totaram (Attorney); Mohamed Sidiq (Taking Our Seat); Jerry Vatamalla (Asian Amer Legal Defence League); Anjali Chaudhry (Chhaya).





Indian-American Akshay Desai has been appointed to a key Republican post in Florida, making him responsible for the party's finances in this election year.


"In this election year we need the resources for victory, and Dr Desai's long history of work for the state and our party make him a proven leader," Republican Party of Florida (RPOF) chairman Lenny Curry said in a statement.


Desai has been appointed to serve as the chairman of Finance Committee of the Republican Party of Florida. Desai is currently the Chairman of the Board, President and CEO of Universal Health Care Group, Inc and serves the health care community through several associations.

A member of the Florida State Board of Education since 2007, Desai previously served as a Member of Florida State Board of Governors from 2005-2007 and as Commissioner and Chairman of the Health Committee on the White House Commission on Asian Americans & Pacific Islanders from 2005-2008.




Many MRIs and PIO's and were recognized at awards ceremony staged by "Arabian Business" Middle East Magazine, along with Special "Trade Relations Award" for India's Consular General Sanjay Verma. INDIAN CEO AWARDS organizers said "The contribution of Indian business leaders to the growth of the GCC economies is unmatched, and tonight's awards are about rewarding the right people, who between them have done so much to develop the region in a number of fields.


EMKE Group founder Yusuffali M A won the coveted Lifetime Achievement Award at the inauguralIndian CEO Awards, held at Dubai's Armani Hotel. The Retail King was one of 16 leaders honored in the first ever event to recognize the achievements on Indian Diaspora Business Leaders. Yusuffali MAwas praised by the judges for "having delivered over several decades an incredible company, incredible growth and an incredible performance".


Other big winners on the night included Dr. B. R. Shetty (Chairman - NMC) from Abu Dhabi with many achievements in Health Care. Earlier he has been honored with Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award and GOPIO Community Service Award. Dr Ram Buxani CEO and Stake Holder of ITL was declared"Inspiring Business Personality" of  GCC. Business Tycoon Vasu Shroff of Regal Group was recognized as "Philanthropist of The Year". Founder of Nikai Group  Paras Shahdadpuri was honored for " International Achievement" in taking his brand beyond GCC on Asian Platform.


Standard Chartered boss V Shankar, who won Banking CEO of the Year, Apparel Group boss Nilesh Ved (Fastest Growing Company), Sarah Belhasa (Female CEO of the Year) were also recognized.




Three Indian American doctors, who were derogatorily called "the Indians" and treated as "second-class citizens" by the CEO of a medical center in the US, have won a racial discrimination case in a Texas court.


The US Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals found that Citizens Medical Center in Victoria had violated the equal protection rights of the doctors. The court ruled in favor of Ajay Gaalla, Harish Chandna and Dakshesh Parikh.


In February 2010, the medical center filed a resolution that would allow only cardiologists with contracts at the hospital to exercise clinical privileges in the cardiology department or part of the hospital's heart program.


The cardiologists fought back with a lawsuit stating they were being barred from practicing not based on their merit and expertise, but because of economical and racial reasons. This not only affected them, but their patients who were denied the right to see the physician of their choice, according to the court documents.


The hospital claimed the resolution was based on the doctors' disruptive behavior and issues with Dr Yusuke Yahagi, a cardiovascular surgeon at the hospital. Court documents also showed that the three cardiologists were derogatorily referred to as "the Indians."


The cardiologists also cited a comment from David Brown, the hospital chief executive officer, as saying the hospital was working on a plan for "getting the Indians off the reservation." The cardiologists said the resolution hospital placed violated their equal protection rights - and now the Fifth Circuit has voted in their favor.


The three doctors said they were consistently treated like second-class citizens, removed from committees and pushed out of laboratory posts arbitrarily, or overlooked in favor of "less-qualified" cardiologists CMC hired.


For now, the case is in stay, or on hold, according to Monte James, the lead attorney for the cardiologists. He expects the federal court will take it off hold, and it will proceed to trial.





Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs has brought out booklets and pamphlets on safeguards, legal remedies and whom to approach for redressing of grievances to help women deserted by their non-resident Indian (NRI) husbands. The pamphlet "Thinking of the marriage of your daughter with an NRI?" highlights precautions for parents to take before entering into a marriage with an NRI man. The booklet, 'Marriages to Overseas Indians', has specific information on safeguards for women deserted by their NRI spouses, legal remedies they can avail of and the authorities they can turn to for redressing of their grievances.


The government has also been providing legal and financial assistance to deserted or divorced overseas Indian women. Now, the scheme has been revised to help Indian women who have been deserted by their overseas Indian/foreigner husbands or are facing divorce proceedings abroad. Government help is provided to only to such a woman who has been deserted in India or overseas within 15 years of her marriage or her Indian/foreign husband initiated the divorce proceeding within 15 years of their marriage.


Financial assistance will be limited to $3,000 per case in developed countries and $2,000 per case in developing countries. The funds are released to the legal counsel of the applicant or Indian community association or women's organization or concerned non-government organization which assists the woman in preparatory work for filing the case.




Roshni Media announces the release of its second book, Roshni, the Light of South Asia: North American Edition. Authored and published by Dr. Rashmee Sharma, the book features 51 profiles, interviews and photos spotlighting first- and second-generation Indian immigrants who have built their own success in the United States of America and Canada. The book is available from, or at


A gala launch party celebrating the book's completion was held Oct. 24, 2011 in New Jersey. The event was attended by many of the luminaries honored in the book, along with well-wishers such as Indian Ambassador Prabhu Dayal and New Jersey Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula.


Roshni International has also inaugurated an e-mail newsletter, filled with exciting updates on Roshni honorees, their families, their causes and passions.


Roshni, the Light of South Asia: North American Edition expands upon the tradition begun withRoshni, The Light of South Asia in 2005, which recognized 101 people of Indian origin who had been extraordinarily successful in the United States alone. "The genesis of Roshni: The Light of South Asia is an effort to demystify stereotypical perceptions of our community and list inspirational heroes of our times...It's my hope via Roshni to reach the first and future generations by building a bridge to communicate pride, strength and sacrifice of the first generation immigrants. My intent is also to focus on enlightening and making younger generation proud of our heritage and culture," Dr. Sharma said.


Dr. Sharma has already begun accepting nominations and interviewing future honorees for a Roshni Global book, with a projected launch date of October 2012. A great gala will be held in India to celebrate the book's completion. Nominations are accepted through


Contact: Dr. Rashmee Sharma at 201-665-2257 or e-mail




Indian companies have invested more than $26 billion in the US in the last five years and the IT companies employ more than 100,000 people in the country as per Indian Ambassador to the US, Nirupama Rao. "As per our estimates, Indian IT industry supports over 280,000 jobs indirectly out of which about 200,000 are with US residents. Two-way trade in goods and services continues to grow steadily reaching over $100 billion last year. The US businesses are becoming strong partners in India's economic growth story; and Indian businesses are creating value, wealth and jobs in the United States," she said.




Prof. Parmatma Saran (Baruch College, City University, New York) and Prof. Rupam Saran, AssociateProfessor(Medgar Evers College of The City University of New York) along with Dr. Thomas Abraham, Founder President of GOPIO International will edit a new book titled People of Indian Origin: A Global Perspective.


Prof. Saran has been doing work on Indians in America for a long time which has resulted into publication of two books and more than a dozen articles. Thomas Abraham is a keen observer of Indian Diaspora, his activism resulted in the formation of Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO). Rupam Saran has also been looking at the experiences of Indian population in the United States. Her focus is in the area of education.


The editors are interested in articles from as many countries as possible with an Indian population who left India forty-fifty years back ( Popularly known as NRIs) as well as those whose forefathers had left generations back (Known as People of Indian Origin known as PIOs). The main goal of this volume is to put together a document which can be used as a source book for the understanding of Indians abroad. The book will focus on the history of their migration, struggle, adjustment and patterns of adaptation. In this attempt to capture their lives, the papers should focus on their activities in the sphere of family, religion, economics, politics and Indian organizations among others. It will be of interest in seeing how the Indian Diaspora has been able to maintain its Indian identity particularly those whose forefathers had left India.


Those who have done some research and writing on this topic may be interested in contributing an article for this volume, especially from scholars with social science background as well as those in community mobilization who are willing to follow an outline and format provided.


Please write to Dr. Rupam Saran if you are interested in joining this effort. Include biographical information along with a list of publications. If you have any thought on this proposal, please feel free to share with the editors.


The editors are hoping to finalize a list of contributors in two months. Soon after that a detailed outline and format to be followed will be shared with all contributors.


Contact: Dr. Rupam Saran, Tel: 516-487-2490 (USA),




University Canada West (UCW) is an approved degree-granting institution in Vancouver. Its MBA program, however, is not accredited by any of the three biggest business school accreditation bodies in Canada. UCW's infrastructure, Classrooms, offices, etc. consists of just four or five rooms in a commercial building in central Vancouver. It had a campus in Victoria which was shut down in March 2011 for financial reasons.


For Indian students, Canada is an excellent destination for a high-quality education at a reasonable cost. They generally cannot find negative about a university while applying for admission. A large number of Indian students enrolled in the university have genuine concern about UCW and the value of the degree they obtain from the university.



GOPIO is a non-partisan, non-sectarian global organization with chapters in several countries, actively promoting the interests of people of Indian origin worldwide by monitoring and addressing current critical issues of concern, and by enhancing cooperation and communication between groups of Indians living in various countries.


GOPIO Individual Life membership is open to all who believe in the mission of GOPIO. The one- time fee is $5,000 for Platinum Life Membership, $2,500 for Gold Life Membership and $1,500 Silver Life Membership and half the amount for each category for those from developing countries and India.


GOPIO is looking forward to opening chapters in all major cities of the world so as to network people of Indian origin all over the world. If you do not have chapter in your city, please visit GOPIO website ( and get details of chapter initiation (visit Process involves sending a letter of intent to start a chapter by a committee of five people or more. For more information, contact:


GOPIO Chairman - Inder Singh, Tarzana, California, USA, Tel: +1-818-708-3885, E-mail:


GOPIO President - Ashook Ramsaran, Fresh Meadows, New York, USA, Tel: 718/939-8194,


GOPIO Executive Vice President - Sunny Kulathakal, Bahrain, Tel: +973 39441956 or +91 9845756692, E-mail:


GOPIO Senior Vice President - Dr Piyush Agrawal, Weston, Florida, USA, Tel: +1-954-684-6494,


To become a Life member of GOPIO, one can sign up online at or fill up the form and send it with a check to: GOPIO International, PO Box 560117, New York NY 11356, USA.



Chief Editor: Dr. Thomas Abraham, Founder President and Chairman Emeritus, GOPIO (Stamford, CT, USA)

Editor: Nami Kaur, GOPIO  Secretary (New York, USA)

Webmasters: Prashant Gupta (Hyderabad, India) and Abu Thomas (New Rochelle, NY, USA)

Contributors of this issue: Inder Singh (Chairman, GOPIO Intl.), Ashook Ramsaran (President, GOPIO Intl.), Dr. Neerja Arun (GOPIO-Ahmedabad), Harry Walia (GOPIO-Sydney North West), Ashok Motwani (GOPIO Life Member, Mumbai) and Dr. Rashmee Sharma (USA) 


GOPIO NEWS welcomes NRI/PIO related stories from all over the world. Be a volunteer correspondent or reporter. Contact Dr. Thomas Abraham, Tel: 203-329-8010, E-mail:

Visit GOPIO's Official site at or