Varanasi, Jan 23 : The 15th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas celebrations came to a gala end here on Wednesday with the President Ram Nath Kovind urging the overseas Indians to be part of the 'growth India' story.
The three day mega event was hosted at the holy city of Varanasi, which is also the parliamentary constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
President gave away awards to overseas Indians for their excellence and contributions in various fields.
The award winners included Norway lawmaker Himanshu Gulati and Rajinder Nath Khazanchi, a reputed civil engineer from Bhutan.
A high-powered panel headed by Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu selected a list of 30 award winners drawn from overseas Indians from across the globe.
President said India is undergoing transformation at an unprecedented scale and it will be imperative for the NRIs and especially the youths to be part of country's development journey.
"This is an era of rapid changes," Mr Kovind pointed out and maintained that youths must be given their time and attention.
"We must listen to the youths," he said underlining the significance of it to make the bond between the country and the Indians abroad deeper.
The valedictory session of the mega event was attended among others by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, UP Chief Yogi Adityanath and Governors of UP and Uttarakhand Ram Naik and Baby Rani Maurya.
In his brief speech, UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath pointed out the special significance of the day as January 23rd also coincides with the birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.
"The movement Netaji had started got the unique support from the non resident Indians," he said.
Altogether there were registration of over 7000 delegates including 5000 of them from 92 countries.
The visiting delegates will be taken to Prayagraj on Thursday morning to participate at the Kumbh Mela and later to New Delhi in four special trains to attend the majestic Republic Day parade at Rajpath on January 26. (UNI)