GOPIO GUADELOUPE will be welcoming Mr. Vayalar Ravi, Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs & Civil Aviation in Guadeloupe for the "First Meeting of Overseas Indians in the Caribbean", to be held on May 28 & 29, 2011.
This is a major event of historical importance.
It is actually one of GOPIO GUADELOUPE’s aims to promote active interactions between English-speaking and French-speaking indian communities in the Caribbean area.
Indeed, after more than 150 years since the arrival of the first Indian "indentured workers" in the "French colony of Guadeloupe" on board the ship Aurélie in the night between December 24th and 25th 1854, the Caribbean people coming from Gandhi’s land never met.
This first meeting will have key moments, in particular the participation of Rhold Pelage who will pay tribute to Henry Sidambarom, his great grandfather, an Indian man born in Guadeloupe who dedicated his life to social justice and led a major political fight granting civil rights to people of Indian origin.
Thanks to this event, for the first time a Minister of the Indian government and delegations from the Caribbean region, the Indian Ocean area and South America will come to Guadeloupe.
It is also a strong sign responding to Mr. Vayalar Ravi’s commitment to bring India closer to its "old diaspora" for whom a memorial and a museum are set to be constructed in Kolkata.
Finally, GOPIO GUADELOUPE wants to express its gratitude, on behalf of the Indo-caribbean people, to Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and Her Excellency Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil for their benevolence.
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