WASHINGTON: The people of Indian origin keep the identity of India alive wherever they are in the world, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has said, applauding the Indian-Americans for maintaining the “complete identity” of their culture thousands of miles away from their home country.
The defence minister was here to attend the India US 2+2 ministerial in Washington DC. Thereafter, he travelled to Hawaii for meetings at IndoPACOM headquarters and then to San Francisco.
Describing his five-day trip to the US as fruitful, Singh said he had a wonderful meeting with his American counterpart Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin.
On Monday, Singh held bilateral talks with Austin and reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral defence cooperation and the regional security situation, including in the Indo-Pacific and the broader Indian Ocean Region.
“I congratulate you for maintaining this complete Indian identity,” Singh told a group of Indian-Americans during a public reception hosted in his honor by the Indian Consulate in San Francisco on Thursday.
“This is not a small thing. People lose their (cultural identity) when they stay at some place for a long time,” he said.
Indians living outside India always feel pride in calling themselves Indians. Singh said he was making his fourth trip in his political career to the United States and the first in San Francisco.
The Indian community in the United States has established itself here. This is a result of the efforts of the community, he added.
“Had I come here as a political leader, not on my official tour, I would have met the Indian community in all the places I visited here,” he said.
India and the United States, being the largest democratic powers, have the potential to establish global “peace and prosperity”.
The relationship between the United States and India is multifaceted, economic, strategic, and defence as well, he said.
“Today the entire world knows that India and the US are natural allies,” Singh said, asserting that this relationship has stability and continuity and at the same time the two countries have an important role to play in maintaining this stability and continuity.
“This ground reality cannot be ignored,” Singh said. He is scheduled to leave San Francisco for India on Friday.
The Indian Diaspora, which keeps on climbing to new heights in the US, plays a key role in this relationship, Sigh said.
People in India are always proud of the achievements that the people of Indian origin or its diaspora achieve here.
For instance, when Parag Agarwal became the Twitter CEO, people in India felt that someone among their own has become the head of Twitter, he said amidst applause.
Similarly, there are several tech leaders in the US from among us, be it Satya Nadella of Microsoft or Sunder Pichai of Google, he said.