Defense and security relationship, fight against terrorism, increase in trade and investment and people-to-people contact are key elements of Ambassador Navtej Sarna’s tenure in the U.S. Addressing the Indian-American community during his maiden visit to Chicago, April 5, Sarna, India’s Ambassador to the U.S., stressed the need to take Diaspora’s inherited achievements “a notch up.”
Envisioning “a particular future for cooperation” between India and the Midwestern America, Ambassador Sarna highlighted industry, finance, education and manufacturing as the areas to be pursued, Hello NRI reported. He touched upon the possibility of enhancing the scope of Prime Minister Modi’s Smart City Program through intra-city cooperation with region’s advanced cities like Chicago. Briefly referring to his interactions with Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner, and with Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Ambassador Sarna stated that “Chicago itself has deep links, and we [India] have much to gain by cooperation.” These are the areas that need to be actualized, he added.
Earlier Neeta Bhushan, Consul General of India in Chicago, welcomed Sarna. Emphasizing the importance of her Midwest jurisdiction, Bhushan informed that the Midwest contributed a mega share to the total of Indo-U.S. trade. She also introduced the regional diaspora as “dynamic and vibrant.”
Bhushan also acknowledged the presence of Neeraj Gupta, secretary, Investment and Public Assets management.
Earlier in the day, the Punjabi Community of Midwest, Chicago hosted a welcome lunch for Sarna at the Chicago Yacht Club. Dr Harjinder Khaira, Amrish Mahajan and Darshan Singh Dhaliwal were the chief organizers. Mohinder Singh and Darshan Singh Dhaliwal presented siropa to Sarna and the event concluded with lunch.
Sarna, a Delhi University graduate with degrees in Law and Commerce is a career diplomat having served in several diplomatic capacities in Moscow, Poland, Bhutan, Geneva, Iran and Washington. He is the author of novels ‘We Weren’t Lovers Like That’ and ‘The Exile’ as well as a short story collection ‘Winter Evenings’. His non-fiction works include ‘The Book of Nanak’, ‘Folktales of Poland’ and ‘Indians at Herod’s Gate’.