NOv 11-17, 2011 - CIF Charter Members Barj Dhahan (Chair), Sarup Mann (Regional Convenor-West), Amrik Sangha and Jay Minhas accompanied BC Premier Christy Clark in the delegation to India led by the Premier. Here is the text of the speech by Barj Dhahan made during the Premier's reception at the house of Canadian high Commissioner Stewart Beck:
"Your excellency High Commissioner Stewart Beck, Honorable Premier, Minister Michael de Jong, friends, fellow British Columbians and Canadians, and distinguished guests:Communities and nations flourish and prosper when visionaries lead them. Visionary leaders not only see the present reality for what it is, more importantly, they imagine what the future can be. They engage heart, mind and soul of their people to dream, to imagine, to risk, to innovate, to create a better and prosperous nation!
Premier Clark, you have kept your promise to lead this trade mission to China and India - to strengthen our existing ties with these two great countries and to initiate new relationships for increased trade and investment. Nearly twenty years ago, Dr. Manmohan Singh, first as India's finance minister and later as Prime Minister, with great fore-sight, patience and determination, transformed India's fiscal and regulatory framework - unleashing the creative potential of India's people to think and innovate through research, hard work and new technologies leading to the rise of India as a growing world power. Our two past Canadian prime ministers and now the Honorable Stephen Harper saw the strategic importance of Canada engaging with India at all levels. It is exciting to see now our two countries, vibrant and dynamic democracies, negotiating an historic Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement for mutual benefits.
Premier Clark your "Canada Starts Here - Jobs for BC" strategy will without doubt lead to increased trade and investment. What you have done in China and what you and we collectively do here in India over these next few days, will not only mean jobs for BC but will help to bring greater prosperity for all Indians and Canadians for generations to come. Your excellency, Stewart Beck, a special thanks to you and your team in India for your tireless and unrelenting effort in promoting 'Canada Brand' in India. What we do together for British Columbia, Canada and India, will echo in eternity. On behalf of Canada India Foundation (and charter members present - Sarup Mann, Jay Manhas and Amrik Sangha, and my father Budh S. Dhahan, and Ajit Thandi ), we honour you both with a small expression of our gratitude and thanks for your leadership."
CIF presented Premier Clark and High Commissioner Beck with souvenir gifts at the occasion.
Picture: Barj Dhahan and Sarup Mann with BC Premier Christy Clark and Minister of Health Michael deJong.