Modi connects with mini-India in UAE


ABU DHABI/DUBAI: It’s a high moment for “mini-India” in UAE, which comprises around 2.6 million-strong Indian community, as PM Modi is all set to charm them at the International Cricket Stadium in Dubai. In a record public gathering in the Gulf state, around 50,000 Indians will be present at the iconic venue and latch on to every word of the Indian leader who has created quite a buzz with the first prime ministerial visit from India to the UAE in over three decades.

Mr Modi has been all praise for the Indian community, which has carved a special place in the social fabric of their adopted homeland with their sheer hard work and enterprise. “As far as the Indian community is concerned, the languages that are spoken in India, are all spoken in the UAE! In a manner of speaking, the UAE is a ‘Mini India’ The way the two communities work together represents a special bond,” the prime minister said. “The Indian community was not only contributing to the progress and development of the host country, but also participating in the   economic development of India through their remittances,” the prime minister said.

Modi ICAD City

Mr Modi also interacted with Indian workers at the ICAD Residential Labour Camp, home to thousands of Indian migrant labourers, in the Gulf state, and promised to address some of their problems arising out of their working conditions in the Gulf state. Mr Modi’s interaction with the Indian diaspora in the UAE is significant as this is the first time he will be meeting mostly blue-collar workers, who are different from the well-heeled diaspora he has addressed in Western capitals. In an article for India Writes Network, Ashok Sajjanhar, a former Indian envoy, has underlined the importance of PM Modi’s diaspora connect in the UAE. “Most Indian-origin residents of UAE and other Gulf countries are unskilled and semi-skilled workers. Only about 20% of the Indian diaspora in the region comprises professionals who are engaged in IT, banking, business or other managerial and executive positions.” 

“Their problems are different, the backgrounds from which they come are different and their aspirations are much removed from those of the well-heeled Indians he has so far encountered in other capital cities he has visited across the world. They are diverse and pluralistic, multi lingual and multi-religious. Most of them are blue collar workers,” writes Mr Sajjanhar.

Faith Diplomacy

Mr Modi also found time for a bit of faith diplomacy  in the Gulf state as he visited the third largest mosque in the world, the Sheikh Sayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi, where he took his trademark selfie and also wrote about the visit in the Guest Book.

In a landmark announcement, the UAE government said it had     decided to allot land for building a temple in Abu Dhabi, the first in the capital city. PM Modi     thanked the UAE leadership for this decision that will cheer thousands of Hindus living in the Gulf emirate.

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India Writes Network
India Writes Network
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