Dr Indrani Ganguly, Public Relations Officer, FICQ Inc.

Indians should stop frittering their energies and focus on reaching the top of their organisations like the India-born CEOs in the USA such as Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google.’ This was one of the many provocative and thought-inspiring challenges thrown out by His Excellency, Dr. A. M. Gondane, Indian High Commissioner to Australia in Canberra at an afternoon tea for community leaders hosted by the Federation of Indian Communities of Queensland Inc. (FICQ) on 22 July.

The afternoon commenced with the many and diverse attendees being invited to tell Dr Gondane about their professional background and community involvement and interests. The responses ranged from ground-breaking research being done on diabetes to the celebration of the role of Australian soldiers of Indian origin who fought in World War 1. Dr Gondane advised it was important to be very clear about what was being celebrated. The Indian soldiers were not carpetbaggers or auxiliaries but men who gave their blood and sometimes their lives and were on an equal footing with the Australians.

Other attendees mentioned their expertise in areas like town planning which they did not consider to be well developed in India and asked how they could help. This was considered to be a complex area that merited further discussion.

Following this, Dr Gondane outlined his vision for Indians in Australia. Apart from the CEOs of global corporations in the United States, Dr Gondane also mentioned the many politicians and public leaders of Indian origin who were making their mark around the world, such as Leo Varadkar, the Prime Minister of Ireland, whose father had migrated to Ireland and India-born governors and other politicians in the US. He hoped that Indians in Australia would soon begin to join the ranks of politicians at all levels – perhaps even the highest- in Australia. The way forward was to be focused, to exert all energy to demonstrate excellence in academia, the media and every other field.

The session ended with Mr Palani Thevar thanking His Excellency and saying FICQ Executive Committee and member organisations looked forward to his returning to attend the Diwali celebrations in October.

Readers who would like more information may contact Mr Palani Thevar, President, FICQ on 0421 656 000.


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