(Image source from: www.india.com)
Over 25,000 Indian origins across the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are expected to attend the public meeting of Indian National Congress Party President Rahul Gandhi's at Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Friday.
Gandhi will be visiting Dubai and Abu Dhabi on Friday and Saturday on his maiden outreach programme with Indian expatriates in the UAE.
Addressing the media in Dubai on Monday, Congress Party’s All India Secretary and in-charge of Indian Overseas Congress, Himanshu Vyas said that over 15,000 people have already registered through the official website created on the occasion of Gandhi’s maiden visit to the UAE.
"It will be a historic event. Not just because this is Rahul Gandhi's first outreach programme to meet the Indian diaspora in the UAE, but the love and admiration shown by the Indians living in the UAE will make it historical. Besides the 15,000 individuals who have registered online to attend the programme, thousands of members of several Indian community groups in the UAE have also confirmed their attendance," he said.
The four-hour cultural meet, which will go on from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., will be dedicated to peace and tolerance promoted by both, India and the UAE.
Himanshu Vyas said that non-violence and non-cooperation were the arms of Mahatma Gandhi against the British rulers. India got freedom without bloodshed. As India is celebrating Gandhiji's 150th birth anniversary and 100th birth anniversary of Founding Father of the UAE Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, it is time to celebrate the values they stood for.
"We believe in tolerance and the UAE is also celebrating 2019 as the Year of Tolerance. Our ethos are the same. And Rahul Gandhi is propagating the same throughout the world.
"He is keen on meeting people of Indian origin in various countries because he knows their worth and wishes to bring them closer to India. He stresses on the need of connecting with the third and fourth generation Indians abroad because many NRIs and PIOs want to work for India, bring investments and technology to their homeland. We need to give them a platform," said Vyas.
Vyas pointed out that the Indian Overseas Congress, under the leadership of Sam Pitroda, started the outreach programme of Rahul Gandhi. Up to now, he has visited the United States, United Kingdom, Singapore and Bahrain. After Dubai, he may visit Australia, where Indians live in a large number.
"In the run-up to this mega event, I have had more than 60 meetings with various Indian social and cultural groups in the UAE. I took note of the issues they raised. Critical issues like rehabilitation of NRI returnees, repatriation of dead bodies to India, exorbitantly high airfare during the peak season, have been conveyed to our party president. He will certainly take up those issues and will raise at appropriate platforms," he said.
During the visit, Rahul Gandhi will have an interaction with Indian students, professionals, and businessmen at various meetings hosted in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. He will also share his ideas with the issues raised by the attendees.