'Success of Indian-Americans, a source of pride for India'

Washington: Observing that Indian-American community are one of the important interface of the Indo-US economic engagement, Indian Ambassador to the US Meera Shankar has said the success of this community is a source of pride and encouragement for the people of India.

"The success of the Indian-American community is a source of pride and encouragement for the people of India," Shankar said in her valedictory address to the 'People-to- People' Conference organised by the State Department ahead of the Obama visit.

"The Indian-Americans are the window to India's culture, tradition and ethos in the United States and a bridge symbolising the friendship between our two great democracies. There is much hope on both sides in their ability and enthusiasm to build newer dimensions of our relationship," she said in her remarks on Thursday.

"We are fortunate to have an Indian-American community in the United States whose capability and contribution instills great confidence. Their ability to serve their adopted home in this country and make such sterling contributions to its society and economy is what, in my view, makes the Indian Americans such an important component of India's growing engagement with the United States," she said.

"We are all looking forward to the visit of President Obama. It is after 32 years that the President of the United States is visiting India in his first term in office. This is a reflection of the growing weight of our relationship," she said.

Shankar praised the role of the Indian-American community in the passage of the nuclear deal.

"Their efforts were largely responsible for creating the right environment and understanding of mutual benefits to both India and the United States from the nuclear deal that eventually facilitated the successful passage of the 123 agreement," she said.

"The fact that the agreement itself was a watershed in the transformation of the India-US relations, makes the political activism and engagement of the Indian-American community in the whole process that much more laudable," she said.

Shankar said economic engagement between India and the United States is going to be a key driver of our strategic partnership in the 21st century.

"And the role that the Indian diaspora plays in nurturing this partnership is truly impressive. Many of the companies run by Indian-Americans are not only investing in India, but also partner in attracting investment from India to the United States, thus contributing to the growth of businesses and jobs in both countries," she said.

"Indian-Americans have been at the forefront of development of the knowledge economy, too, and shaping the India-US partnership in this new and promising area," she said.