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Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (Non-Resident Indian Day)

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) is celebrated on 9th January every year to mark the contribution of
Overseas Indian community in the development of India. January 9 was chosen as the day to celebrate this occasion since it was on this day in 1915 that Mahatma Gandhi, the greatest Pravasi, returned to India from South Africa, led India’s freedom struggle and changed the lives of Indians forever. Pravasi Bharatiya Divas conventions are being held every year since 2003.

The decision to celebrate Pravasi Bharatiya Divas was taken in accordance with recommendations of the High Level Committee on the Indian Diaspora set up by government of India under the chairmanship of Laxmi Mall Singhvi. The then Prime Minister of India, Shri Atal Bihari Bajpayee after receiving the report of the Committee at a public function at Vigyan Bhavan in New Delhi on 8 January 2002, announced the "Pravasi Bharatiya Divas" (PBD) on 9 January that year. The day was chosen to mark the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa to India in 1915.

The Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is sponsored by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs of the government of India and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Ministry of Development of the North Eastern Region of India.

The event holds much importance as it also helps in extensive networking among the Indian community who attend it from various parts of the world. Pravasi Bharatiya Divas programme serves as a platform for them to share their valuable experiences in various fields, be it economic or social. The individuals who have achieved excellence in their respective fields are also honoured at the event with the prestigious ‘Bharatiya Samman’ award. Apart from networking and building partnerships, Pravasi Bharatiya Divas function also helps in discussing important initiatives related to trade, investment, emigration, education, culture, health, development of science, and technological advancements.

The 1st Pravasi Bharatiya Divas was held in 2003 in New Delhi and the Chief Guest was Sir Anerood Jugnauth, Prime Minister of Mauritius.
The 2015 Pravasi Bharatiya Divas was held in Ahmedabad celebrating 100 years of Mahatma's return to India. The Chief Guest was Mr. Donald Ramotar, President of Republic of Guyana. The theme for this was "Apna Bharat Apna Gaurav" "Connecting Generations".

The Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Conference 2016 is to be held at Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi from 08th – 10th January, 2016. The Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Conference 2016 is being planned differently with an objective for developing a new paradigm for engagement with the Diaspora over the next decade.

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