It is time to bring back our brothers and sisters stranded in India

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Please welcome our Digital Edition dated February 1, 2022

Venkat Raman
Auckland, February 3, 2022

For the past two years, about 790 men and women (our brothers and sisters) have been waiting at the international gates waiting for their opening to return home. Some of them went on holiday, while some went to attend to an emergency- a terminally ill parent, a case involving their property or for a pleasant celebration of their marriage or birth of a child.

To their misfortune, Covid-19 entered New Zealand before they did and the government promptly closed our borders, preventing their entry. They have silently waited for a positive response, appealed and then protested- none of them has been successful.

India’s High Commissioner Muktesh Pardeshi has been taking up their cause, arguing with the New Zealand government that they are a part of this country, having invested their life and future. It is time that they were allowed to return.

“The genesis of this problem goes back to March 2020 when the New Zealand government closed its borders. Air New Zealand operated three flights to bring home about 500 New Zealand citizens and Permanent Residents.  Thereafter, the Government of India organised Air India flights through its ‘Vande Bharat’ Programme. About 3500 stranded people in India and New Zealand benefited by these flights,” he said.

Mr Pardeshi was speaking at an online Group Discussion organised by ‘Indians Living in Auckland Facebook Group’ in association with Indian Newslink and the Indian High Commission on March 29, 2022.

These and other issues, along with a Special Report on the 73rd Republic Day of India from the core of our Digital Edition dated February 1, 2022, now available for your free-read on our website

Mr Pardeshi also said that Indian nationals who are financially stressed by job loss, death in the family and other causes can be assured of support and assistance from the Indian High Commission in Wellington.

He said that people in need can approach his office for quick relief, especially under the current Covid-19 pandemic.

“Indians in need of monetary support should not hesitate to ask for help. I urge them to write to us as soon as they feel the need,” he said.

Testimony to the inherent strength

Our Republic Day Special carries articles that narrate the process of recovery already underway and the projected positive growth this year and beyond. As President Ram Nath Kovind said, it is a testimony to India’s spirit in the face of adversity that the economy is projected to grow at an impressive rate in this fiscal, after going through contraction last year.

“This shows the success of the Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan launched in the previous year. The government has shown relentless focus on reforming every economic sector and providing a helping hand wherever necessary. The impressive economic performance is made possible due to improvement in the agriculture and manufacturing sectors,” he said.

The spirit of belonging and oneness was evident among the Indian Diaspora in New Zealand although almost all physical events were cancelled because of the restrictions imposed by the current Red Settings under the Covid-19 Protection Network and Traffic Lights System.

The Digital Edition carries our usual departments- Current Affairs, Educationlink, Fijilink, Businesslink, Viewlink, Communitylink, Entertainmentlink and Sportslink.

Please read and share with your colleagues, associates and friends.

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