Year of India in Canada launched

Year of India in Canada launched

Indian High Commissioner S M Gavai launched the programme with a major investment in Canada-India Centre for Excellence in Science, Technology, Trade and Policy at the Carleton University. Gavai and Roseann O’Reilly Runte, Carleton University President, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Monday governing the Visiting Chair in the field of humanities and social sciences that would bring together key members of the academic, business and public policy communities in both countries to provide cutting-edge research, analysis, training and exchanges.

Gavai said that the yearlong festivities would include exhibitions of Indian art and culture, seminars on promoting trade and business, conferences on enhanced co-operation, food and film festivals and more in different parts of the country.

The celebratory year was designated for 2011 by the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Canadian counterpart Stephen Harper during the latter's visit to India in November 2009. "The aim is to showcase India's rich art and culture, as well as its rise as an economic power, thereby promoting closer people-to-people ties across a broad range of sectors, including business," Gavai said.

"A number of positive developments point to an upward trajectory in this bilateral relationship. A sustained engagement of Canada with India is evident from the number of agreements and MOUs already signed between two countries such as Civilian nuclear cooperation agreement; higher education; earth sciences and mining and cultural cooperation," Gavai said while talking to newsmen after the function.

"Social Security Agreement, the Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement, and MoU on Transportation are under negotiation and are expected to be concluded soon," he said. Gavai said that both the governments were committed in the formation of a broader human connection strategy linking segments of civil society and corporate sector in India and Canada with knowledgeable members of India Diaspora so as to formulate an action plan for next twenty year.

"We are most grateful to the Indian government," Runte said. "This generous contribution will make Carleton’s centre a unique resource for the university, the community and our country," she added.

Carleton currently has 25 faculty members conducting India-related research, partnerships with seven Indian post-secondary institutions and many formal relationships with Indian businesses and organizations.

Last fall, the university hosted Canadian business leaders for roundtable discussions with two top Indian ministers and hosted other Indian government delegations.
As part of the celebration, the 2011 Regional PBD would be held in Toronto on June 9 and 10th, Preeti Saran, Consul General of India, said in Toronto after hoisting tricolor to commemorate India's Republic Day.

Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce would be the nodal agency for the event. The theme is Building Bridges: Positioning Strategy of the Indian Diaspora. Indian Diaspora members in Canada, USA, Mexico and the Caribbean countries are expected to attend the PBD­Canada 2011 convention in large numbers.

For the first time, the 12th edition of the IIFA awards will take place in Toronto later this year, which has become the first North American city to host the glittering ceremony, popularly known as the Oscars of Bollywood. The International Indian Film Academy Awards (IIFA) takes place in a different world city each year.
The ceremony caps off a four-day festival that traditionally features a film festival and industry forum.

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