SEZ Rules, 2006



Dual Use of Non-Processing Area of Sezs by SEZ Entities as Well as DTA Entities Allowed 


Department of Commerce vide gazette notification G.S.R. 5(E) dated 2nd January, 2015 has allowed dual use of non-processing area of SEZs by SEZ entities as well as DTA entities by amending Rule 11(10) of the SEZ Rules, 2006. The Gazette notification may be seen at http://sezindia.gov.in/writereaddata/GeneralNotifications/Amendment%20rule.pdf.

MINISTRY OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY
(Department of Commerce)
NOTiFICATiON
New Delhi, the 2nd January, 2015
G.S.R. 5(E).-In exercise of the powers conferred by Section 55 of the Special Economic Zones Act,
2005 (28 of 2005), the Central Government hereby makes the following rules further to amend the Special
Economic Zones Rules, 2006, namely:-
1. (1) These rules may be .called the Special Economic-Zones (Amendment) Rules, 2014 .
(2) They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.
2. In the Special Economic Zones Rules, 2006 (hereinafter referred to· as the principal rules), in rule 11,
in sub-rule (10), the second proviso shall be omitted.
3. In the principal rules, after rule 11, the following rule shall be inserted, namely:-
"1IA. Bifurcation of non-processing area: The non-processing area can be bifurcated into two parts,
namely:-
(1) Where the social or commercial infrastructure and other facilities are permitted to be used by
both the Special Economic.Zone and Domestic Tariff Area entities: No exemptions, concessions
or drawback shall be admissible for creation of such infrastructure. The Customs duty, Central
Excise duty, Service Tax, and such other Central levies and tax benefits already availed for creation
of such infrastructure shall be refunded by the Developer in full, without interest. However, in cases
of short payment of the amount refundable to the Government on account of dual use permission,
interest will have to be paid at the rate of fifteen per cent per annum from the day the said amount
becomes payable to the date of actual payment. Utilisation of SEZ land shall be subject to following
conditions:
(a) the land is to be put to only such use which is as per the regulations of the concerned State
Government or local bodies;
(b) if any exemption or refund has been taken from State or local taxes like stamp duty, change of
land uses, etc., the same shall be refunded back to State Government or local authorities and a
certificate to this effect shall be produced from the concerned authorities;
(c) No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the concerned State Government shall be produced before.
the consideration of the request by Board of Approval (BoA). State Government may issue No
Objection Certificate (NOC) taking into consideration (ajand (b) above.
(2) Where the social or commercial infrastructure and other facilities are permitted to be used only
by Special Economic Zone entities: This portion shall be bonded and physically segregated from
the Domestic Tariff Area, non-processing area, specified at (I) above and the processing area of the
Special Economic Zone. The infrastructure, as may be approved by the Board, for this part of nonprocessing
area shall be eligible for exemptions, concessions and drawback.
(3) The Department of Commerce has provided the following norms with respect to areas to be
earmarked for residential, commercial and other social facilities:-
(a) The Developer or Co-developer shall submit an application in the format as specified by the
Central Government to the Development Commissioner indicating therein the portion of the
non-processing area where social or commercial infrastructure and other facilities are proposed
to be used by both Special Economic Zone and Domestic Tariff Area entities and the said
application shall be accompanied with a copy of the Infrastructure Plan and No Objection
Certificate from the concerned State Government and supporting documents.
(b) The Development Commissioner shall forward the said application to the Board of Approval
(BoA) for approval.
(c) The area restrictions for duty paid dual use non processing area in the Special Economic Zones shall be as follows:-

(1) Housing '"not more than twenty five per cent of non-processing area;
(ii) Commercial- not more than tenper cent of non-processing area;
(iii) Open area and circulation area-not less than forty five per cent of nonprocessing
area;
(iv) Social and institutional infrastructure including schools, colleges, sociocultural
• centres, training institutes, banks, post office, etc., in the remaining
area.
(d) Floor Area Ratio or Floor Space Index shall conform to the norms of the concerned local
authorities.
(e) No sale shall be permitted of such duty paid dual use infrastructure in the non-processing area
and only lease hold rights can devolve upon the users Of transferees of the said dual use duty paid
infrastructure in Non Processing Area of Special Economic Zones; and
(t) Any other conditions as may be specified by the Department of Commerce or Board uf
Approval".
[F. No. C.1/212014-SEZl
Dr. GURUPRASAD MOHAP ATRA, It. Secy.
Note:-The principal rules were published in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary vide number G.S.R 54(E),

dated the 10th February, 2006 and last amended vide number G.S.R. 540(E), dated the 12th August, 2013.



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Chief of Army Staff Visits NCC Republic Day Camp – 2015 

Chief of Army Staff General Dalbir Singh visited the NCC Republic Day Parade Camp 2015 at the Garison Parade Ground here today. On arrival, the General officer was received by the DGNCC, Lieutenant General Aniruddha Chakravarty. 

A contingent of smartly turned out NCC cadets drawn from the three wings namely Army, Navy and Air Force presented an impressive Guard of Honour to the Chief of the Army Staff on his arrival. 

NCC Band from Birla Balika Vidyapeeth Pilani, Sainik School Kapurthala and North Eastern Region directorate performed a fine band display playing melodious martial tunes. Their enchanting tunes coupled with lithe movements earned big applause from one and all. The COAS thereafter visited the ‘Flag Area’ comprising of colourful tableaus prepared by the NCC cadets depicting various social awareness themes where the young boy and girl cadets briefed an all attentive General Officer. 

The COAS thereafter, visited ‘Hall of Fame’, a proud possession of NCC with display of rich archival collection of alumni photographs, models, motivational and other visual delight of the three wings of NCC. Then he was driven around the unit lines. He was impressed by the high standard of layout and cleanliness. 

The versatile NCC cadets then presented a spectacular Cultural Programme in the NCC auditorium comprising group dances by North Eastern Region Directorate and ballet by Delhi, Odisha and MP & CG Directorates showcasing their multi-talent abilities. The cultural programme manifested the rich cultural heritage of our nation. 

Congratulating the cadets for their captivating cultural programme and soldierly alertness, the General Officer lauded the stellar role played by this premier youth organization that provides strength through its motto of ‘Unity and Discipline” to the youth to shoulder the responsibilities of building a strong nation. 

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Raksha Mantri Hands Over First Overhauled Su-30 MKI to Air Chief at HAL Golden Jubilee Celebrations 

The Hon’ble Raksha Mantri, Shri Manohar Parrikar handed over the first overhauled Su-30 MKI to the Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha at Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), Nasik today. The handing over of the world’s first overhauled SU-30 MKI coincides with 50 years of establishment of Nasik Division of the HAL. The key personnel who were present at the function included the Chairman, HAL, and Defence Secretary, besides a host of other dignitaries. After the keynote address by the Hon’ble RM, the world’s first overhauled SU-30 MKI took to the skies, thereby demonstrating the technical prowess of the HAL. 

On arrival at Ojhar airfield, the Air Chief, along with the RM, Defence Secretary and Chairman HAL, planted trees at the MiG complex of HAL. Besides the main event of handing over of the overhauled aeroplane, the CAS also inspected various assembly shops and the flight hangar.

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Overseas Indians Have Knowledge and Resources to Reinforce India’s Effort in Niche Areas: Shri M Hamid Ansari 

Vice President addresses the Valedictory Session of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 16 Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards Presented 


Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015

Following is the text of the Address by Hon’ble Shri M Hamid Ansari, Vice President of India at the Valedictory Session of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015 on January 9, 2015 in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.

I am happy to be here this evening to confer the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards, on the occasion of the 13th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, to fifteen distinguished personalities.
This year is a special one. It coincides with the centenary of Mahatma Gandhi’s return to India from South Africa, following which he took on the mantle of leadership of perhaps greatest non-violent struggle for independence against the colonial yoke. Gandhi ji was also, unquestionably, the greatest Pravasi Bharatiya of all.
Today’s Awards, as per our national legislation, are conferred on Non-Resident Indians and on Persons of Indian Origin, or on organizations and institutions established by them, who have made significant contributions in any of a set of eight fields in which they have through their individual contributions brought name and fame to India and Indians. 
Many amongst the vast body of Overseas Indians have done so, and continue to do this in their own chosen way. A common thread amongst them is their affection for their land of origin and their adherence to its heritage, culture and traditions and the values emanating from them.
I congratulate the winners of this year’s Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards. We are grateful for their contributions to society. They are deserving recipients of this recognition. Through their exemplary work, they have also proved to be outstanding envoys of peace, friendship and cooperation between India and countries of their residence.
Today, Overseas Indians are estimated to be around 25 million. They are in virtually every country and region of the world. Jidhar dekhta hoon faqat tu hi tu hai. Some, particularly in recent times, have gone voluntarily; the ancestors of others were victims of circumstance; compulsions of livelihood propelled many others.
No less diverse is the mix of skills and professional callings that range from blue collars workers to white collar experts in diverse fields, to men and women of science, doctors, engineers, IT professionals, business persons, entrepreneurs and investors. Some reside permanently in the countries of their work and have acquired nationality; others remain abroad for shorter periods and return home after a few years.
They have, like most of us, multiple identities: a common denominator is their emotional bond to India, and to its cultural legacy. They cherish it, individually and collectively, and so do we here. The institution of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is an occasion of bonding.
Beyond these emotional bonds, and nourishing them, are modern day economic imperatives. NRI remittances, principally from those who are short-term residents abroad and need to sustain families back home, constitute an important element in our balance of payments. They also help propel in varying degrees economic activity in their home states. The more affluent segments of the NRI groups are increasingly a source of investments in diverse fields including information technology, healthcare, energy, mineral resources, retail, hospitality, gems & jewellery etc. The continuing liberalisation of the Indian economy, and the most recent policy initiatives taken or proposed by the Government, are expected to galvanise the involvement of the Overseas Indians in the many fields of economic activity. 
Friends,
Relationships, even emotional ones, are not a one-way street. The Overseas Indians have expectations aimed at facilitating and intensifying their involvement with India. The Government of India, and the State Governments, have acknowledged the validity of these sentiments and taken or initiated steps to attract, assist and promote a deeper and multifaceted relationship, which is mutually beneficial and long lasting. We in India attach highest importance to issues of interest and concern to the overseas Indians.
India today is on the cusp of change, in the process of actualising the expectations of its vast population for a better life. India aspires for a better place in the comity of nations. Both of these require rapid economic development, accompanied by better educational, health and social parameters. This requires a massive collective effort by all segments of our population. The governments at central and state levels need to provide visionary leadership and are determined to do so.
In this endeavour, an important role can be and must be played by the Overseas Indians. They have knowledge and resources to reinforce the effort in niche areas; they also have the experience of other lands where similar efforts were pursued successfully. We welcome such initiatives, which will replicate these valuable experiences here and save us from reinventing the wheel.
What then is the challenge before us in this task of linking India more closely with its overseas community? In my view it is to maintain and strengthen the linkages between the next generation of Pravasis and their counterparts in India. It is essential that the new generations at both ends continue and strengthen this mutually beneficial bond. The Youth Pravasi Bharatiya Divas organized on the 7th of January is a good step in the right direction.

I thank you all for your presence today. We hope to see back in the years ahead. We will continue working closely together in order to realize our collective desire to see India as a modern and prosperous nation.
Jai Hind.

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External Affairs Minister's speech at Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards ceremony 


Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015

Following is the text of the External Affairs Minister`s address on Awards Ceremony at the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas – 2015

“I welcome you in the midst of our extended family of Indians at this celebration of multifaceted talents of the Indian diaspora. Overseas Indians, who include Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and Persons of Indian Origin (PIOs), have carved a unique place the world over, with their relentless hard work, enterprise and innovation. They are bridge-builders between their ancestral land and their adopted countries, they have stretched the boundaries of achievement and excellence wherever they have chosen to settle and live.

Today’s event is special. It coincides with the centenary of Mahatma Gandhi’s return to India, a historic moment that also marked the beginning of the long journey of national renewal and re-making of our nation and civilisation.

Mahatma Gandhi is easily the most famous and celebrated ‘Pravasi Bharatiya,’ the greatest pravasi of all times. We are fortunate to celebrate 100 years of the return of the ‘Sarva Shrestha Pravasi’; the one who remapped the destiny of India and lit up for the world a radiant and humane path of non-violent salvation.

Today, there is not a patch of foreign land which is not inhabited by Indians and glows with traces and influence of our multi-layered culture. Cutting across continents and countries, from America to Africa and from Australia to Argentina, persons of Indian origin and NRIs are making their presence felt in countless ways, big and small. The sun may have set on the British Empire, and Mahatma Gandhi ensured that it did, but the sun never sets and will never set on the extended community of overseas Indians who are shining and thriving in every part of the world.

It’s not that it’s been smooth sailing for them all the way; they have had their share of difficulties and hardships, but they have persisted, overcome, and made a well-earned place for themselves in their adopted foreign lands. And, in this process they have brought glory and honour to India. It, therefore, is a matter of joy and pride to honour outstanding overseas Indians and to confer on them the much-coveted Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award.

Given the rich spread of talents and the proliferating number of outstanding overseas Indians, the choice is always difficult to make. It’s heartening to see overseas Indians making a mark in just about every field or arena. From business, the professions, academia, law, science and engineering to media, social activism and fashion designing to Hollywood as actors, film makers and producers, they are setting new benchmarks for excellence and achievement. 

Overseas Indians are not just content with tried and trusted professions and vocations; many of them have successfully carved a career in politics, government, and diplomacy. In many countries, PIOs have become heads of state and government. This year, we have President of Guyana Donald Ramaotar here in our midst, and I warmly welcome him and thank him for finding time to be here.
Those gathered here in such large numbers live in different countries and regions and pursue varied professions, but there is one vital spiritual bond that unites them – it is the sense of organic connection to this ancestral land, the deep-rooted sense of Indian-ness that is civilizational and predates nation states.
They are proud and accomplished citizens of their own respective countries, but their heart also beats for India. They instinctively sense a stake and deep kinship in the unfolding India story. The rise of India, let me stress, is not just about India; the destinies of India and of the larger world are interlinked. For when 1.2 billion people of India attain their full potential, it’s not just India that will be energised and enriched, the whole world will be enriched and find itself redeemed.
This is a time of unprecedented hope for India.
Ever since the change of government in Delhi seven months ago, the world is looking afresh at the India story and is ready to bet big on India. And I am sure all gathered here also feel this thrill and excitement of a great nation trying to remake itself, and striving to reclaim its place in the community of nations.
Our government has been specially proactive in nurturing the bonds that bind Mother India and its children in distant lands. The Diaspora is close to Prime Minister Modi-ji’s heart. Where-ever he has gone, he has made a passionate appeal to NRIs and PIOs to be partners in India’s ongoing journey of development and national resurgence. We believe in infusing a new energy and vitality into this lasting relationship between India and its Diaspora.

In this context, we were happy to have so many young overseas Indians and the first ever day-long youth PBD that was held on the Day 1 of the conclave. Over 50 per cent of India’s population is below 25 years, and they are bursting with new hopes and aspirations. There is no bar for the dreams of youth, and it should be so.
It is hugely gratifying to see young overseas Indians taking the initiative to connect with the country of their origin, and build lasting connections with the Indian youth back home. So, we look to build on the success of the initiatives that we have had this year with ‘Bharat ko Jano’ and ‘Bharat ko Mano’ . We hope that they kindle the young with the spirit of - "Bharat ko Banao and Bharat Mein Banao.”
This is one of those rare times when if all of us show enough imagination and initiative, rise to the occasion and seize the moment, anything is possible. This is not just about talk; those gathered here today can make you contribution felt in many ways. The government of Shri Narendra Modi has only one mission: to re-make India into a great nation, a mission in which every Indian and equally every overseas Indian has a vital stake. It will be a perfect fit, a confluence of dreams and interests, and I have no doubt that with such interlinking and intermeshing, both India and the adopted countries of overseas Indians will benefit enormously. 

The contribution of over 25 million-strong Indian Diaspora is deeply valued and cherished. The global Indian has become a brand synonymous with excellence, achievement and the indomitable human spirit to shine forth in all times, in all places and in all conditions. On this day, we have gathered to salute their never-say-die spirit. Today, we have gathered to acknowledge their achievements.
Just as Gandhiji upon his return sought to remake India, many of you can walk in his footsteps and help create new milestones in this journey of India. The idea of India is richer and more complex than many of you would think it to be, and we all here can partner in the India growth story in myriad ways. We all can walk hand-in-hand, shoulder-to-shoulder to make Gandhi’s dream true, and not just for India, but for the world, a peaceful world, free of conflicts, and flowing with genuine freedom and harmony.”

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External Affairs Minister’s Introductory Speech at the Session with Indian Achievers, Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015 

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015

Following is the text of the External Affairs Minister`s Introductory Speech at the Session with Indian Achievers, Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015

“I would like to begin this session on Indian Achievers in a globalised world by recounting the words of one of the most well known votaries of globalization Thomas L. Friedman who said, "The challenge in this era of globalization—for countries and individuals—is to find a healthy balance between preserving a sense of identity, home, and community, and doing what it takes to survive within the globalization system”. 

It is indeed my good fortune that today I am surrounded by eleven exceptional personalities- who, nourished by their Indian roots, have shown to the world how the right balance between progress and the preservation of ancient traditions, ensures a better future for all-living embodiments of our Prime Minister’s clarion call for ‘sabka saath, sabka vikas’.

I would like to take a few minutes to summarize the exceptional record of public service and the many ‘firsts’ that our panelists can proudly claim as their own:

We have the honour of having with us H.E. Mr. Showkutally Soodhun, the Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Housing and Lands of Mauritius. He is a seasoned politician and been a parliamentarian in Mauritius for more than three decades. He has also served as Minister of Industry and Commerce.

Dr. Bhishma Agnihotri was appointed as India’s first Ambassador at large for Diaspora Affairs by Atalji. Dr. Agnihotri has done notable work in bringing the Government closer to its Diaspora’s sons and daughters and making us more sensitive to their concerns. 

The Rt. Hon. Baroness Prashar, throughout her illustrious career, has led a number of public and voluntary organizations with great distinction. For instance, she became the Director of the prestigious ‘Runnymede Trust’ Think Tank, when she was only 28 years old, where she focused her work on racial equality in a multi-ethnic Great Britain.

When during the recent November visit by Prime Minister Modi to Australia, the two countries agreed to collaborate in the field of agricultural research; it was, in many ways, an acknowledgement of Indian minds like Sh. Paras Ram Punj- the ‘Pulses King’ Down Under and the role that his Parasram Group-global leaders in agro-processing; have played in that sector! 

We are honoured to have amongst us today, Dato` Seri Samy Vellu Sangalimuthu, the longest serving President of the Malaysian Indian Congress (since 1979 for 11 consecutive terms) and the longest serving minister in the Cabinet of Malaysia (till 2008).

Sh. Ashok Kumar Mago, founder Chairman of the US-India Chamber of Commerce, was a moving spirit behind the setting up of the "Friends of India Caucus” in the US Senate; making India the only country with an individual Caucus at the Senate.

Sh. Sunil Chopra, like me, started young- in the cut and thrust of student politics in India- although from the opposite end of the political spectrum! His election as the mayor of the central London borough of Southwark in June 2014, was significant due to the low percentage of people of Indian origin in his area (only about 1.5%,), indicating his wide-spread popularity across various communities.

One of the striking achievements of Sh. Hans Hanoomansingh’s public service through journalism in Trinidad and Tobago is his life-long crusade for multiculturalism. While inaugurating ‘Divali Nagar’ celebrations- born out of a concept enunciated by Hanoomansingh, Prime Minister Basdeo Panday had said, "Few gifts of greater value have been given by a single citizen to this nation, this region and this hemisphere”.

Dr. Ravi Jahagirdar, the President of American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI)- one of the largest ethnic professional organizations in the US (representing about 100,000 Indian doctors) compared office-bearers of AAPI to "caretakers of established plans and projects, advancing progressively towards these goals with the vertically expanded use of diverse professionals”. Such resolve has deep resonance within the Gandhian socio-economic philosophy of ‘Trusteeship’.

Sh. Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, a self-made entrepreneur from sadi Dilli, has had a truly impressive rise. Since moving to New Zealand in 2001, he has not just set-up diverse business interests, from fashion to real estate, but also emerged as the first ever Indian and the first ever Sikh Member of the New Zealand Parliament.

Finally, I welcome Dr. Rajindre Tewari, Chairman, India Business Council, Netherlands Council for Trade and Investment. As we ‘Link West’ under the Prime Minister’s flagship ‘Make in India’ initiative, we would do well to learn from the experiences and expertise of leading venture capitalists like Dr. Tewari, who have focused on ‘sun-rise’ sectors of particular interest to us; like bio-technology and financial services.

All these Achievers have set benchmarks in distant lands and diverse fields. It is my privilege to now invite them to share their unique experiences in quest of realizing their full potential and making their dreams come true, so that we can all collectively benefit from their individual journeys.”

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Opening Remarks of Shri Rajnath Singh Union Home Minister at the CMs Session on Investment Opportunities in States 

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015

I welcome the honourable chief ministers of all the states participating in this session of the 13th ‘Pravasi Bharatiya Sammelan’. I take this opportunity to applaud the hard work, dedication and determination displayed by the 25 million strong Indian diaspora that has earned global respect for its work culture, discipline and successful integration with the local community. You are truly an embodiment of ‘The Indomitable Spirit of India’ of which we are all proud of.
It was exactly one hundred years ago from today that the brightest beacon of Truth and Non-violence in modern times – Mahatma Gandhi - returned to India from South Africa. As you all know, Gandhiji’s epoch-making return to India shaped the country’s struggle for Independence.
Mahatma Gandhi believed that political freedom would lead to the social and economic transformation and cultural revival of the country. Gandhiji’s call for ‘Khadi’ and ‘Swadeshi’ were an attempt to deal with the problems of shortages in the economy and create a sense of confidence among the people. ‘Swaraj’ would be incomplete without ‘Swadeshi’ – which in a broad sense signifies economic vitality of our country.
When Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee became the Prime Minister of India he also had to deal with the problems of shortages in our economy. He was successful in transforming our economy from an ‘economy of shortages’ to an economy which was self-reliant. He made ‘Good Governance and Development’ the biggest priority of his government and he ensured people’s participation in this endeavour. It was the vision of Shri Atalji to connect with the Indians living abroad which fructified as this annual meet and the first ‘Pravasi Bharatiya Divas’ was organized in 2003. This event marks the historical importance of the return of Mahatma Gandhi to his motherland and the success of ‘Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas’ lies in rekindling the spirit of ‘Bharatiyata’ in every ‘Pravasi’. 
Mahatma Gandhi assertion that “True ‘Bharat’ is to be found not in its few cities, but in its seven hundred thousand villages” is true even today in its spirit. On the one hand rapid growth in urbanisation has created new opportunities in the cities and on the other hand our villages cannot be left behind. The process of development has to reach the far flung areas of our country and even our villages in the remotest areas should be brought within its ambit. If we fail to develop our rural areas it would create a sense alienation and distress among the major sections of our society.
India’s potential to prosper lies in the growth of its villages, cities and States and Union Territories. From spinning India’s textile success to harnessing information technology for good governance, from leading in conventional and renewable energy to exploring exciting vistas in tourism, every success of the state has added to the nation’s strength and prestige. And this is the reason why today’s session on ‘Investment Opportunities in States’ holds a special significance.
In democracy we follow the dictum of ‘collective wisdom’ and ‘collective responsibility’. No state is an island itself and there has to be an active cooperation and connection among all the states and also between the Centre and States. We are here to share our ideas and experiences on how this great nation can lead to a path of more progress and prosperity.
There could be difference of opinion on how to pursue our national goals but I am confident that our collective wisdom will definitely help us in overcoming all our differences and outlining the future course of this great country.
We are here to deliberate on economic issues and opportunities present before us. There are certain challenges facing the economy and the country but we have to put up a collective fight against these odds. India as a nation is not a ‘Lifeless Idea’ but it is a ‘Living Organism’ which comprises of a body and soul. It gets adversely affected if one of its organs malfunctions. Therefore regional imbalances and lopsided development are major problems which need to be addressed on priority for a healthy and equitable growth in this country.
As a ‘Federal Polity’ India offers a unique opportunity to all the states to pursue its agenda for development and governance with the active support from the Centre. India today demands greater impetus to ‘Cooperative Federalism’ than the ‘Competitive Federalism’. The Centre and the states need to work together in one direction to fulfil the dreams and aspirations of its people.
The new government headed by Shri Narendra Modi at the Centre has taken a series of measures to re-ignite the economy. We have reasons to be optimistic as we are constantly making course corrections to gain investor confidence. The Government has taken a number of policy measures to stabilize the economy and restart the engine of our economic growth.
Our Government is focused on infrastructure development and a number of new road and rail projects have been taken up, including priority to completion of projects already announced. Projects of metro rail and high speed rail systems are being structured on fast track. Industrial hubs and smart cities are being given planned. We are seriously pursuing early implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) which will create a buoyant source of revenue and place the fiscal position on a permanently solid footing and serve to make India more of a common market by eliminating internal barriers to trade.
We are focusing on bringing transparency in allocation of natural resources including coal blocks, iron ore and other minerals as well in time to come. In particular e-auction of coal blocks and the recent amendments to the Mines & Minerals (Development & Regulation) Act will bring more transparency, competitiveness and efficiency in the system. Through these measures we have been able to rebuild confidence and trust that is extremely important to revive investments and drive higher growth.
In his Independence Day Speech the Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi gave us a vision and exhorted investors from all corners of the globe to come and ‘Make in India’. The “Make in India” initiative was launched in the background of a stagnating manufacturing sector and increasing levels of unemployment among the youth. ‘Make in India’ is a mission to transform this country from an importer of manufactured items to an exporter of manufactured products. India has a vast pool of natural resources and skilled human resources to make this country a ‘New Manufacturing Hub’.  The people of Indian origin and the NRIs should invest in actualising the dream of ‘Make in India’.
The Prime Minster is focussed on improving the business environment in the country. He has stressed on improving the business conditions and drew the attention towards the mantra of ‘Minimum Government, Maximum Governance’. The vision at the root of this transformational endeavour is ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas’.  It naturally encompasses all of the Union of India, including all of its States.
In order to improve the global perception about difficulties in doing business in India the Centre is working tirelessly to remove the bottlenecks and busy cutting the red tape. There was never a better time to invest in the country that is determined to take its rightful place in the comity of nations. Today, I exhort the people of Indian origin to come and invest in this great country and become an active partner in our definitive march towards prosperity and in making India a global superpower.
The government under the astute leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Bhai Modi is committed to resolve all the key issues facing the people of Indian origin. Addressing the concerns of our overseas brothers and sisters the Prime Minister announced that all PIO card holders will enjoy life long visa and exemption from police reporting. Now the government has issued an ordinance merging both PIO and OCI cards giving way to an improved scheme where they can enjoy life long visa facility and other benefits pertaining to citizenship.
Before I take my seat, and we all listen to our Chief Ministers on the opportunities in their respective States, I sincerely thank the organisers for giving me the honour to chair this session. I thank you all for your attention, and look forward to interesting presentations on the remarkable opportunities in our States.

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Government removing bottlenecks to promote NRI partnership to script India’s success story : Rajnath Singh 

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015



The day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke about India being  the country offering abundant opportunities, Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh elaborated on the new policy initiatives being undertaken by the government for promoting inclusive growth.  Chairing a session on “Investment Opportunities in Indian States”  at the Pravasi  Bharatiya Divas in Gandhinagar, Shri Rajnath Singh asserted that the country is moving towards an era of cooperative federalism,  giving voice to states in shaping the economic destiny of the nation. He said, with this objective in mind, the erstwhile Planning Commission has been replaced with the Niti Ayog, w.e.f 1st January 2015. “In democracy, we follow the dictum of ‘collective wisdom’ and ‘collective responsibility’. I am confident that our collective wisdom will help us in overcoming any differences” he  said.

The Home Minister said, the new government  headed by Shri Narendra Modi has already taken a series of measures to re-ignite the economy. “We have reasons to be optimistic as we are constantly  making course corrections to gain investor confidence” he added.  Shri Rajnath Singh said the ‘Make in India’ initiative is a mission  to transform this country from an importer of manufactured items to an exporter of manufactured products.  The objective is to increase   the share of manufacturing in the GDP from the current level of 14% to 25 %."

In order to improve the global perception about difficulties in doing business in India the  Centre is working tirelessly to remove the bottlenecks and busy cutting the red tape.  Mr. Rajnath Singh said the Prime Minster is focussed on improving the business environment in the country and has  stressed on the mantra of  ‘Minimum Government, Maximum Governance’.  He said the Government is seriously pursuing early implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) which  will create a buoyant source of revenue and create a large common market by eliminating internal barriers .  Mr. Singh said a decision has  been taken to allocate natural resources only through e-auction to ensure  transparency. “Such measures are necessary to rebuild confidence and trust that is extremely important to revive investments and drive higher growth” he said.  

Mr. Singh said India has a vast pool of natural resources and skilled human  resources to make this country a ‘New Manufacturing Hub’.  The people of Indian origin and  the NRIs should invest in actualizing the dream of ‘Make in India’.  “India’s progress can not be achieved only by the people living within   the country. Today, I exhort the people of Indian origin to come and invest in this  great country and become an active partner in our definitive march towards prosperity and in  making India a global superpower”, the Minister said.

The Home Minister however, did not forget to stress on inclusive  growth and removing regional imbalances. Stating that  India’s potential  to prosper lies in the growth of its villages,  Shri Rajnath Singh said “the process of development has to reach the far flung areas  of our country and the villages even in the remotest areas should be brought within its ambit.  If we fail to develop the rural areas of India it would create a sense of alienation, isolation  and dejection among the major sections of our society.”

Chief Ministers of some prominent states like Prakash Singh Badal , Punjab,  Manoharlal Khattar, Haryana, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Madhya Pradesh, Raghubar Das, Jharkhand, Anandiben Patel, Gujarat, Devendra Fadnavis, Maharashtra,  Laxmikant Parsekar, Goa,  N  Chandrababu Naidu, Andhra Pradesh,   Oomen Chandy, Kerala made brief presentations about investment opportunities in their respective states.  States of Gujarat, Maharashtrta, Karnataka, Kerala, Punjab, UP, Bihar and Jharkhand  are also holding separate investor meets.

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15 Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards Announced For This Year 

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2015


The President of India has issued the notification for announcing 15 Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards for this year and in addition one of last year’s awardees who could not accept the award last year, this is Senator Liza Singh from Australia who is also in Gandhinagar to receive the award. So there are 16 awards presented this year.
The names and the countries of the awardees are as follows:
Ms. Mala Mehta from Australia,
Mr. Esop Ghulam from South Africa,
Mr. Satyanarayan Nadela from USA (this award will be in absentia)
Dr. Kamlesh Lula from the US,
Mr. Mahendra Nanji Mehta from Uganda,
Lord Raj Lumba from the United Kingdom,
Prof. Nathuram Puri from the United Kingdom,
Dr. Sanjay Rajaram from Mexico,
Justice Karunakaran from the Seychelles,
Mr. Rajamal Para from Oman,
Mr. Bharat Kumar Jayantilal Shah from the UAE
Mr. Ashraf Pellarkunnmal from UAE,
Ms. Nandani Tandon from US,
President Donald Ramotar from Guyana and
Mr. Kanwaljit Bakshi from New Zealand.

These are the award winners- 15 from this year and one from last year.
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