By S A H RIZVI
The Indian community in Kuwait has warmly welcomed the address of Union Minister Dr S Jaishankar telecast live on Indian Embassy social media pages and said it reflects the warmth and closeness of the relation between the two countries.
“Minister Jaishankar address to the community was brilliant as it gave a clear picture on so many issues that were of concern for the community and it also reaffirmed the government willingness to stand by them in all time of needs”, said SK Wadhawan, senior member of the Indian Community Support Group.
Wadhawan said External Affairs minister was very forthcoming of his discussions with the Kuwait authorities on many bilateral issues concerning the Indian community and that some issues, which have been lingering for long, have been diplomatically dealt.
Echoing his appreciation to the Minister address, Wadhawan said the Indian community has always remained in forefront to the help the nation and our people especially when such calamities hit the country. The Indian Community Support Group has until now rushed 18000 Oxygen cylinders, six Oxygen concentrators besides other relief material through their own collection.
The Minister recognized these efforts and told the Indian diaspora “. “Indian community in many ways defines India abroad. The contribution you make, the respect you make abroad, is really what makes India’s interaction with world rather unique. It is something which the Prime Minister and all of us appreciate deeply”
Wadhawan who is also considered as Goodwill Ambassador of India and is among the oldest NRI in Kuwait said such recognition from the Minister embolden us that our services are being recognised and so is our commitment.
Wadhawan appreciated Indian Ambassador Sibi George who welcomed the Minister for his proactive role in the pandemic and also for his keen active participation in community affairs.
To the credit of our Ambassador, it was for the first time the entire Indian community was able to attend the virtual meeting through the Embassy social media pages. “Our Ambassador and his team must be credited for creating such a vast landscape of audience,” he added.
In his address, Minister Dr S Jaishankar briefed community members on various discussions he held with the Kuwaiti authorities. “The discussions were focused more on to find new areas of cooperation keeping in mind the immediate impact of Covid as well as the longer term.”
Dr Jaishankar addressed various issues faced by the Community including the travel restrictions and resumption of flights between the two countries in his meeting with the Ambassador of GCC countries, Minister requested all ambassadors to ensure that issues such as the distractions in families travel due to the suspension of flight service, those who cannot retain their jobs due to flight suspension need to be taken care.
“The current situation also opened up new opportunities of increased export to this region,” the minister said.
“The long-pending MoU on domestic workers which in many ways have been streamlined and strengthen the position of our Indian domestic workers in Kuwait,” he added.
On the situation back at home, Dr Jaishankar said the second wave of Covid started to recede. The number of infections has slowed down to that in early May, he said.
Jaishankar further explained: “A large part of that was made possible by the vigorous response and effort and energy people put on. We ran trains of oxygen from production centers to various cities, planes were mobilized, we procured medicines, and many of them are from abroad. and ensured domestic production.”
On the emerging economic scenario, Minister said he saw a strong recovery of our economy during the first wave. The impact of the second wave is far less than the one earlier.
During his address, Minister appreciated the effort of the Kuwait government during this hard time. “We very much recognize what the Indian community also did. I know many of you ran to acquire medical oxygen for your fellow citizens back at home,” the minister acknowledged.