April 11, 2012

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

Issue: XI-5 April 11, 2012
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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. One can become Life Member online by visiting


We are bringing a special bulletin to invite you to many programs planned in the next three months in different parts of the world. As a servie ot the Diaspora community, admissions to many of these programs are FREE. Check details at individual programs below.



The Office of Indian Facilitation Centre (OIFC) of India's Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA) in collaboration with Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) in partnership with Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO International) and Indian High Commission in Nairobi, Kenya has arranged first of its kind Diaspora Engagement to be held on 13th April, 2012 in Nairobi, Kenya.


Tentative Program Outline: Diaspora Engagement Meet B2B Meetings, MoU signing between OIFC and diaspora associations and Cultural Program.


0930- 1000 Hrs Registration

1000- 1400 Hrs OIFC Diaspora Engagement Meet

Brief Program Inaugural Session:

            Opening remarks by the Secretary MOIA & Chairman OIFC

            Lighting of the inaugural lamp by the dignitaries from India and East Africa

            Welcome address by the Ambassador of India to Kenya

Keynote address by the Hon'ble Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs

Address by the representatives of the Government of East African countries

Interaction with the audience

High Tea

Business Session:

Welcome remarks by the High Commissioner of India in Kenya

Introductory remarks and presentation on MOIA by the Secretary MOIA & Chairman OIFC

High Commission of India,Nairobi

Presentation on OIFC by the CEO, OIFC

Presentation on IDF & other initiatives by a MOIA representative

Special remarks by partner organization GOPIO.

Presentation by 2-3 state governments on investment opportunities and the state level initiatives for engaging the diaspora with Indian states

Emerging India: investment opportunities and business prospects presentations by 2-3 Industry players from India

Interactive Q & A Session with Secretary MOIA and senior representatives of the Indian Missions in Kenya and other East African countries

Concluding Remarks

1400-1500 Hrs Networking Lunch

1500-1700 Hrs B2B Meetings between the delegates and the representatives of State Governments and Industry players from India

1500-1700 Hrs MoU signing between OIFC and potential Indian diaspora association(s) in East Africa

1700 Hrs onwards Cultural program and dinner

Contacts: Markandey Rai (GOPIO Kenya) at; Munish Gupta (GOPIO Regional Coordinator, Africa) at; Sujata Sudarshan at







A Global Initiative To Improve The Health of PIO Community 


Cordially invite you to attend




Do You Know That People from the Indian Subcontinent are THREE times more likely to develop Diabetes than Americans? 


Come Learn from the Experts "How to Conquer this Disease" 


This program will help you understand if you are at risk and How to Defeat and How to manage Diabetes 


Date:   Saturday, April 14, 2012 

Time:  2:00 PM to 4:00 PM 

Place:  Sunnyvale Hindu Temple


Speakers: Sangeeta Ahuja RD, CDE & Jeevan Zutshi 


FREE Admission - Advance Reservation is required - RSVP by April 12, 2012 


For information contact: 

Jeevan Zutshi: 510-589-3702: 

Raj Bhanot: 408-687-1955 

Chandru Bhambra: 510-299-0906 

Sangeeta Ahuja: 203-329-9744 


For more information about GOPIO Health Council






Global Organization of People of Indian Origin

(GOPIO International)


in collaboration with


GOPIO Business Council & GOPIO Chapters of Tri-State NY-NJ-CT


cordially invite you to a presentation and interactive session on


India-US Geo-Economic Strategies & Roles in 21st Century


Starting at 12:30pm on Saturday, April 14, 2012


Kubera Hall at Hindu Temple of New York

45-57 Bowne Street, Flushing, Queens, New York


Program: 12:30pm - 1:00pm  Registration

1:00pm - 3:30pm  Session

Speaker: Prof. Prabhu Guptara, Distinguished Prof of Global Business,

Management & Public Policy, William Carey University, India

"Examining Indian and US Geo-Economic Roles in the 21st Century"

Speaker: Prof. Maya Chadda, William Paterson Univ, NJ (GOPIO Member)

"India's post-Cold war quest for a geo-strategic doctrine"

Speaker: Seth Bornstein, Exec Dir, Queens Economic Development Corp, NY

Speaker: John Choe, Exec Dir, One Flushing, New York


Interactive Q/A


3:30pm - 4:00pm Snacks, Networking


Admission is Free. Advance registration required.


Sponsors: GOPIO and John Messer Esq.

Co-Sponsors: Indian Jewish Council,  Pro Pol LLC, IndUS Forum, Richmond Hill Econ Development Council and NFIA


For registration, contact:

Dr Abraham Phillips - 1-732-673-8134

Ashook Ramsaran 1-917-519-5783


Bio-Profiles of Lead Speakers

                                                                                                                          Prof. Prabhu Guptara Dr. Prabhu Guptara, William Carey University, Meghalaya- Born and educated in India, Prabhu has two passions: India and the global context. For fifteen years, till he retired in March 2011, Prabhu was Executive Director, Organizational Development for Wolfsberg (a subsidiary of UBS, one of the largest banks in the world) responsible for the Distinguished Speaker Series (top political and business leaders) and for Think Tanks (industries, markets and global trends) through which his job was to add value to the bank in innovative ways. Earlier roles include: a Governor of the Polytechnic of Central London, Member of the Council of the British Institute of Management, of the International Federation of Training & Development Organizations (IFTDO), of the Association for Management Education and Development (UK), of the South East Regional Council of the Confederation of British Industry. Guptara is Distinguished Professor of Global Business, Management & Public Policy, William Carey University, India and the 2012 Distinguished Speaker, IndUS Forum, USA.


Organizer, chair and lecturer by invitation for numerous international conferences, he has contributed widely to radio and television in the UK and other countries (The Money Program, Any Questions) and has written for Financial Times (London, UK), The Guardian, The Times and other publications. He is included in Debrett's People of Today and in Who's Who in the World. He is the Publisher of THE INTERNATIONAL INDIAN (Dubai); Columnist, FORWARD Magazine (Delhi) magazine; Distinguished Professor of Global Business, Management and Public Policy, William Carey University (Meghalaya, India); Director of the best-known Indian food company in Switzerland; and has been a member of the jury of numerous literary and cultural competitions in the UK and the Commonwealth. He is committed to the development of India and works hard to that end through a range of NGOs, educational and other organizations.


Dr. Maya Chadda, William Paterson University, New JerseyProf. Maya Chadda - Maya Chadda holds an M.A. in Government from NYU and a Ph. D. From the Graduate Faculty, The New School of Social Research and is a research fellow at the Southern Asian Institute, Columbia University. Her publications include Indo- Soviet Relations(Bombay, Vora & Co.); Paradox of Power: The United States Policy in Southwest Asia (Santa Barbara, California, Clio Press); Ethnicity Security and Separatism in South Asia ( New York, Columbia University Press/Oxford University Press) and Building Democracy in South Asia: Pakistan, Nepal and India (Lynne Rienner Publishers, March 2000). Maya Chadda has worked as a consultant to the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the United Nations Family Planning Agency (UNFPA). In 1998 she was appointed as the Director of Undergraduate Research for William Paterson University responsible for setting up a grant and scholarship program and served on the review board of the United States Institute of Peace, a prestigious think tank in Washington DC.

Chadda is a recipient of many grants, the most recent among these is the Rockefeller Residency Fellowship at Bellagio, Italy. In 1998 she was given the Excelsior award for excellence in academic achievement by the Association of Indians in America and the Network of Indian Professionals. Chadda is a member of Council on Foreign Relations and has served on its Task Force on South Asia.

 GOPIO Health Diabetes Awareness Program in White Plains, New York


When Global Organization of People of Indian Origin Connecticut Chapter (GOPIO-CT) celebrates its sixth anniversary at the Italian Center of Stamford, five Indian Americans will be honored by the organization for their achievements and contributions at an Awards Banquet on Saturday, April 28. They are: Mr. Vivek Maru, Dr. Faquir Jain, Ms. Chandra Prasad, Ms. Neena Singh and Ms. Malika Bhandarkar. Dr. William "Vijay" Pinch will be honored with a Friend of India award.


"The award selection is a rigorous process conducted by an independent committee which evaluates all nominations and we are glad we select the best possible candidates every year," said GOPIO-CT President Shailesh Naik.


The evening's program will include a cocktail reception, awards ceremony, entertainment by local performers, dinner, dance and live music. "Every year we gather together to celebrate the achievements of some fine, distinguished individuals from our community, to congratulate them and let them know that we are proud of their achievements in their careers and day today life and we would love to emulate and show them as role models to our next generation," Naik added


Mr. Vivek Maru is Chief Executive officer of Namati, an international organization that tests the potential of legal empowerment through innovative interventions and research.  Namatis' work seeks a better understanding of the impacts of legal empowerment and to create the most effective mechanisms for achieving them.  Mr. Maru graduated from Harvard College, magna cum laude, and Yale Law School.  He has served as senior counsel in the Justice Reform Group of the World Bank and clerked for Hon. Marsha Berzon on the ninth Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals, among his many accomplishments.  Mr. Maru is recognized in the category of Social Entrepreneur.


Dr. Faquir Jain, professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Connecticut is being recognized in the category Applied Science and Research.  He is involved with design and fabrication of microelectronic/optoelectronic devices and ICs.  He has collaborated to form Biorasis Inc. to commercialize a minimally invasive glucose sensor for real time, continuous glucose monitoring.  


Ms. Chandra Prasad is a multi-talented writer whose work has received praise in Booklist and USA Today.  She created the popular career guide "Outwitting the Job Market" and has written scores of articles on diversity and the workplace.  She has published several books and is currently developing a novel for young adult readers.  Ms. Prasad is recognized in the category of Arts and Letters.


Ms. Neena Singh is being recognized for her community service here and in India. She has volunteered in many non-profit activities - helping visually impaired senior citizens; tutoring under-privileged teens; cooking and serving in soup kitchens; and raising funds for local charities and for project - Pingalwara in Amritsar, a home for the underprivileged and mentally challenged. Neena is co-President of the PTA of the Greens Farms Academy and co-Leader of the Girls' Scout Troop and is active in community building activities in Wilton and Stamford.  


President's Young Person Award goes to Ms. Malika Bhandarkar, an accountability expert who influences decision makers at all levels to amplify the message "Women Count for Peace".  With a Masters in International and Development Economics from Yale in 2005, Ms. Bhandarkar joined President Clinton's Tsunami Recovery Office at the United Nations in New York.  Malika and her team work in post-conflict countries, at the invitation of governments, with national Ministries and civil society organizations, to build responsive accountability systems that monitor  and enhance gender equality and women's empowerment.  She is about to embark on a 10-country pilot initiative to further set and implement new standards and practice.


Friend of India Award goes to Dr. William "Vijay" Pinch, professor of History and Chair of the History Department at Wesleyan University.  Dr. Pinch's principal areas of research and teaching are South Asian history, religion and history, and maritime world history.  Dr. Pinch was born in India.  He is author of numerous book chapters, essays and reviews as well as articles.  He has published three books:  Warrior Ascetics and Indian Empires, Peasants and Monks in British India and Speaking of Peasants; Essays in Indian History and Politics in Honor of Walter Hauser


Over the last six years, GOPIO-CT, a chapter of GOPIO International has become an active and dynamic organization hosting interactive sessions with policy makers and academicians, community events, youth mentoring and networking workshops, and working with other area organizations to help create a better future.

GOPIO-CT Annual Awards Banquet 2012



Following the sporadic series of conferences on the Indian Diaspora in the Caribbean since 1975 held mainly in Trinidad and Tobago, a conference every year is being organized in various parts of the region.


The tentative conference schedule for the next five years is as follows:

2011 - Conference in Trinidad and Tobago - done

2012 - Conference in St. Vincent

2013 - Conference in Suriname

2014 - Conference in Belize

2015 - Conference in Trinidad - 170th anniversary of Indian Arrival

2016 - Conference in Jamaica


This year's conference will be held in St. Vincent on the weekend of June 1st , 2nd and 3rd, 2012 on the theme "The Indian Diaspora in St. Vincent and the wider Caribbean". The conference will coincide with Indian Arrival Day in St. Vincent on June 1st which has been formally recognised by St Vincent and the Grenadines Parliament since 2007.


The conference aims to bring together academics, scholars, students, teachers, organizations and people with an interest in the Indian Diaspora in the Caribbean to discuss their research findings. Space will be provided for less formal presentations from activists and practitioners in the field in order to contribute to the limited store of public knowledge on Indians in the St. Vincent. Possible presentation topics can include, but are not limited to conversion, resistance, discrimination, politics, history, family histories, migration, literature, gender, oration, performance, art, sports, recreation, accommodation, survival, the media, etc. At least a quarter of the paper to be presented must deal with Indians in St. Vincent.


The population of St. Vincent is approximately 100,000 consisting mainly of persons of African descent. There are small numbers of mixed persons of Carib and African origin, Europeans and South Asians/East Indians. Indians form about 5,000 (5%) of the total population. Although Indians in St. Vincent are scattered in several villages, there are distinct areas where they are concentrated, namely Richland Park, Calder and Rosebank as well as Akers, Georgetown, Park Hill and Orange Hill.


The St. Vincent Chapter of GOPIO (The Global Organization of People of Indian Origin) will be the main host and organizer of the conference. GOPIO was founded in New York in 1989 initially to fight human rights violation of People of Indian Origin (PIO). GOPIO has now set its priorities in pooling the resources, both financial and professional, for the benefit of PIOs in the countries they live.


The conference organizers will provide free accommodation, breakfast and lunch, and ground transportation for the weekend for presenters only. Other participants would be provided with subsidized services. Rooms can be shared to minimize the cost of accommodation. Participants are free to choose their own accommodation at their own cost. However, all participants should stay at or near the conference venue for security and convenience. Participants are encouraged to invite and bring their friends and family members for the weekend in St. Vincent.


The tentative program is as follows:

Friday June 1- ceremonial opening at 6.00 p.m. with a feature speech, concluding with cocktail reception

Saturday June 2 - all-day presentations from 9.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m., concluding with a cultural show and/or film screening beginning at 7.00 p.m.

Sunday June 3 - all-day island guided tour that would include tangible, intangible and natural heritage and historical sites such as monuments, museums, beaches, events, ceremonies and activities.


Call for Papers on Indian Diaspora Conference in St. Vincent


Please send abstracts of 200 words and brief biodata (via MS Word attachment) by April, 1, 2012 to

Dr. Arnold Thomas in St. Vincent -, and Dr. Kumar Mahabir in Trinidad


In the Subject line, please type "St Vincent Indian Conference". The deadline date for the submission of the full paper is May 1, 2012.


Contacts: Dr. Arnold Thomas in St. Vincent (GOPIO Regional Coordinator, Caribbean), Dr. Kumar Mahabir in Trinidad (Assoc Prof, University of Trinidad & Tobago & Co-Chair, GOPIO Academic Council at



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 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: Ashook Ramsaran, GOPIO  President (New York, USA)

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

Contributors of this issue: Ashook Ramsaran (President, GOPIO Intl.), Markandey Rai (GOPIO Kenya), Sangeeta Ahuja (GOPIO-Health, Stamford, USA), Shailesh Naik (GOPIO-CT, USA), Dr. Arnold Thomas (GOPIO-St. Vincent)


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