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Need a separate ministry for NRIs: Arathi Krishna

Need a separate ministry for NRIs: Arathi Krishna

Mangalore Today News Network

Mangaluru, April 14, 2024: Arathi Krishna, Deputy Chairperson of Karnataka government’s NRI Forum, announced ongoing efforts to establish a dedicated policy and ministry for safeguarding the interests of non-resident Indians (NRIs) originating from Karnataka.

Echoing this commitment, the recently unveiled Congress manifesto also pledges to establish a distinct ministry for NRIs at the national level. This dedicated ministry aims to prioritize the welfare of NRI Kannadigas, aligning with the five assurances outlined by the Congress for Karnataka and reiterated in the party’s 2023 assembly election manifesto, she informed the media.

Arathi Krishna in Mangalore

Krishna emphasized that the absence of leadership within the NRI Forum over the past five years is now being rectified, with concrete steps being taken to fulfill the promise of establishing a separate ministry. Previously, there existed a standalone NRI ministry at the national level, but it was merged into the external affairs ministry after the BJP assumed power, she noted.

Drawing attention to Kerala’s model, where a specialized NRI Ministry effectively addresses expatriate concerns, including repatriation in case of fatalities abroad, Krishna underscored the necessity for a similar setup in Karnataka.

Regarding Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s engagement during his Mangaluru roadshow, which includes garlanding the statue of Narayana Guru—a move perceived to attract Billava votes—Krishna remarked on the reluctance of NRI entrepreneurs to invest in Dakshina Kannada due to communal tensions, despite Mangaluru’s favorable connectivity. She stressed the urgent need for regional development.

Responding to inquiries about job losses in Saudi Arabia, Krishna revealed that the NRI Forum is currently compiling pertinent information. She noted that such initiatives were initiated during her tenure as Vice Chairman but were discontinued due to the absence of leadership within the Forum.

Regarding the BJP’s assertions of Prime Minister Modi enhancing the nation’s global image, Krishna remarked that while the notion of "image" has evolved with the advent of social media, it remains primarily a matter of publicity. She highlighted the increased reach and immediacy of messages through active social media platforms compared to previous years.

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