Reminding the role played by non-resident Indians (NRIs) in the country's development, UK-based leading industrialist Lord Swraj Paul has said almost USD 65 billion have come into India in the last six months through NRI deposits.
Lord Paul, who is the Founder Chairman of UK-based Caparo Group, also said "India tends to forget" the contributions made by the NRI community.
"Even now, as late as last year, or this year when the financial crisis hit India, they (government) are finding our banks are suffering from a lot of non-performing assets (NPAs). The NRIs have come to the country on the call of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI)," he said at a dinner hosted in his honour by the NRI Institute here last night.
"Almost USD 65 billion have come in the last six months from NRI deposits," Lord Paul added.
"Somehow India tends to forget what the NRIs have contributed. They are the one's who came to India's help in 1990s when the government of India opened the business...," he added.
Lord Paul said he hoped the Indian government and the people will consider NRIs as their own. He said the community is as proud of India as anybody in India.
On the ongoing Lok Sabha elections, he said the Indian voter cannot be influenced by bribes.
"All this is rubbish, whether the papers here or in Europe or the world, that Indian voter is bribed or this or that. He votes exactly where he wants to vote. And always in India, my view is, that the only winner is he, the Indian voter," he added.
India, the world's largest democracy, is in the midst of an election and the voting turnout in so huge, which is not the case in any western country, he said.
Lord Paul also said political parties should focus on real issues like education and poverty alleviation for the betterment of the country.
"Nobody has talked about education, nobody has talked about what is the condition of the people below poverty line. Isn't it time that voters should demand some explanation from all the political parties, why they are not going, where they should be? I hope someday good sense will prevail," he said.
Lord Paul, who is also the Chancellor of the University of Wolverhampton and University of Westminster, stressed on the need to further improve education in the country and make it more global in perspective.