Transnationalism, Culture and Diaspora in the Era of Globalisation

Published Date:   Sunday, Feb 25, 2018

Transnationalism, Culture and Diaspora in the Era of Globalisation

Centre for Study of Diaspora, Central University of Gujarat has recently organised an International conference on Transnationalism, Culture and Diaspora in the Era of Globalisation”, 21-23 Feb 2018. Dr. Atanu Mohapatra, Chairperson, Centre for Study of Diaspora, Central University of Gujarat and convenor of the conference in his welcome Address highlighted the importance of diaspora and the theme of the conference and also gave a brief overview of the centre.

Several eminent scholars have participated in the conference that includes Prof. Makarand R. Paranjape, JNU, Prof. Pankaj L. Jani, Vice-Chancellor, Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University, Dr. Manoj Mohapatra, Guest of Honour, Joint Secretary, Overseas Indian Affairs, Ministry of External Affairs, Amb. Mr. Dave Persad, Chief Guest, High Commissioner, Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Prof. M.K. Gautam, Key Note speaker, Former Chancellor, European University of West and East, The Netherlands, Prof. Vivek Kumar, JNU, Prof. Irudaya Rajan S, CFS, Prof. E.V. Ramakrishnan, Prof. Chandra Mohan, Prof. Mohammed Badrul Alam , Prof. Sanjeev K. Sharma, Prof. C.S Bhat, University of Hyderabad, Prof. Panchanan Mohanty, University of Hyderabad.

There are several Round Table and Plenary Sessions such as Diaspora, Politics and Transnational Networks, Diaspora, Globalisation and Transnationalism: Literary and Cultural Representations, Migration and Diaspora: Struggles, Survivals and Success Stories, Diaspora Studies: Issues and Research Prospects.

Today’s diasporas are doubly privileged

Prof. Makarand R. Paranjapee mentioned that diaspora writers are the leading writers today. What was this phenomenon? He said “narratives” or softpower is more important than the so called hard power. Touching upon the origin, narratives and the spread of diaspora as a concept, Prof. Paranjapee said that narratives are very important to understand diaspora. For diaspora, “homeland” is “sacred”. Though traditionally diaspora is not a happy conditions, today’s diasporas are doubly privileged. They get the best from both home and host.

Nation Creates diaspora and Diasporas create nation

Prof. Paranjapee further said that Nation Creates diaspora and Diasporas create nation. Zionist diaspora is born in Europe.

Prof. Pankaj Jani, Vice-Chancellor, Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University highlighted the demographic size of the diaspora and its support to India. Dr. Mahapatra, MEA highlighted several government initiatives and proactive steps to engage diaspora. Engaging diaspora at the highest level is the main priority of the Government of India.

Diversities in Diaspora is important

Ambassador Devi Prasad emphasised the diversities in the diaspora. He said Hindu, Muslim, Christian all co-exist side by side in Trinidad and Tobago, Caste system that divides people is no more prevalent in Trinidad Tobago. Though people have orinigin in India the people of Indian origin are equally owe their own country.

Differential treatment of Indian Government towards PIOs

Prof. Mohan K Gautam, who is a noted Cultural Anthropologist emphasised that cultural retention is very important for the existence of diaspora. India need much more proactive engagement with the  old diaspora. He laso lamented that there is differential treatment of Government of India towards PIO and NRI. While NRIs are preferred, PIOs are neglected.

Prof. S.A. Bari, Vice-Chancellor, Central University of Gujarat, gave the presidential address in which he highlighted the importance of diaspora studies in the present time. He mentioned that almost all countries have diaspora as migration affects every country. United State of America is the best example of country made by diasporas.



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