Beyond cricket and curry: PM Modi says diaspora powers Australia-India relationship

| Updated: 23 May, 2023 5:51 pm IST
Prime Minister Narendra Modi (file photo)

SYDNEY: Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivered an impactful speech at Sydney’s Qudos Bank Arena Olympic Park highlighting the influential role of the Indian diaspora in strengthening the Australia-India relationship. Accompanied by Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, PM Modi participated in a special event dedicated to honoring and celebrating the vibrant Indian community residing in Australia.

The enthusiastic chants of “Modi, Modi” reverberated through the air inside the arena, as the Prime Minister commended the deepening ties between the two nations, attributing their growth to the local Indian diaspora. One big highlight of the event was the warm bear hugs and handshakes between the two leaders.

During his address, PM Modi articulated a compelling vision for the India-Australia relationship, emphasizing that it transcends the commonly used descriptors of “Commonwealth, Cricket, and Curry.”

He remarked, “Previously, our relationship was said to be defined by 3Cs, but I believe our connection goes beyond these. It is built on mutual trust and mutual respect.” The Prime Minister highlighted the expanding avenues of interaction between the two nations, mentioning that yoga, tennis, and films now serve as additional bridges between them. He also acknowledged the role of the Indian diaspora in fostering the bond, stating, “The real reason, the real power, lies with all of you Indians who call Australia home.”

The PM also informed the crowd that a street in the City of Perth has been renamed in honour of Indian-Australian Anzac Private Nain Singh Sailani, following a personal request from him.

“He died fighting for Australia during WWI,” said the PM

Among the Indian-Australian soldiers who served in the Australian Imperial Force during World War I, Private Nain Singh Sailani was one of the 12 individuals known to have enlisted. Tragically, Private Sailani, along with Private Sarn Singh, is the only Indian soldier documented to have lost their lives in action while serving as members of the AIF. Their sacrifices and bravery serve as a testament to the deep connection between India and Australia, transcending borders and uniting in the face of adversity.

During his address to the Indian diaspora in Sydney, Australia, PM also announced that Brisbane is set to receive a new Indian consulate. The establishment of this consulate signifies the growing importance of the India-Australia relationship and aims to further strengthen diplomatic ties between the two nations.

Adding a touch of lightheartedness, PM Modi playfully shared his desire for Australian PM Albanese to experience the delectable delights of Chatkazz’s ‘Chaat’ and ‘Jalebi’ from Jaipur Sweets in Harris Park, which he had heard so much about. “I’ve heard that Chatkazz’s ‘Chaat’ and ‘Jalebi’ from Jaipur Sweets at Harris Park are truly delicious. I urge you all to take my friend, Australian PM Albanese, to savor the culinary delights of that place,” PM Modi expressed with a smile.

PM Modi further reassured the audience that India shines as a beacon in the global economy, as acknowledged by international organizations. He mentioned the IMF’s recognition of India as a bright spot in the global economic landscape, emphasizing the strength and appreciation of India’s banking system amidst the troubles faced by banks in various countries. The Prime Minister also touched upon the emotional connection between India and Australia, citing the shared mourning of hundreds of Indians when Australian cricket legend Shane Warne passed away. “We felt like we had lost someone very close to us,” he empathized.

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