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Be responsive to expat’s needs, SM Krishna tells Indian missions

Posted on June 28, 2012
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NEW DELHI: Ahead of his outreach visit to Central Asia in the first week of July, External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna Wednesday said he had asked embassies and consulates to be “responsive” and “proactive” in mitigating problems of expatriates living around the world.

Krishna will be meeting heads of Indian missions in the region next week. Over the last few months, he has held such interactions on a regional basis in Singapore, Cairo, Abu Dhabi, Madrid and Havana.

“In the meetings (with heads of Indian missions) that I have been having in various regions of the world, what we have done is to try analyse the various issues and problems of Indian expatriates in the respective countries, and how they look at the global developments of the region,” Krishna said.

“The feedback that I have got so far is that this has served an important and useful purpose of the ambassadors in that region trying to share their perceptions, views and experience with their colleagues and their counterparts,” Krishna said.

Based on the interaction, the ministry of external affairs will prepare an assessment and provide the needed inputs.

Krishna said the message he had been persistently providing to the heads of missions is to “treat our own people well”.

Giving examples of racial attacks against Indians in Australia a couple of years ago, Krishna said the Indian missions in Sydney and Melbourne had begun walk-in meetings with officers for Indians on Fridays.

“With that, the problems of Indians in Australia has been substantially solved, if not eliminated.

“So, in many other nations, particularly where we have a large expatriate population making substantial remittances to India, it is all the more reason why our embassies and consulates should be more responsive and proactive in terms of mitigating their problems.”

“Particularly in the Gulf region, when they are in distress, their issues need to be taken up and resolved. This has helped quite a bit in addressing the Indians’ concerns abroad,” he added.

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