Top American lawmakers have pledged to work to strengthen ties with India, which they said has become all the more important in view of the "big threat" being posed by China to the world.
“I serve on the Armed Services Committee and really understand how important that relationship is between the United States and India,” said Congresswoman Elaine Goodman Luria in her address to the Indian-American community at an event to celebrate Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsava.
She represents Virginia's 2nd congressional district in the House of Representatives.
As many as 75 Indian American organisations have come together to observe the historic milestone of India’s journey after 1947.
Prominent among these organisations include U.S. India Relationship Council, Sewa International, Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation, Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh, GOPIO Silicon Valley, U.S. India Friendship Council, and Sardar Patel Fund for Sanatan Sanskruti.
“A lot of Indian-Americans are actually representing in California and I'm very, very proud of that. We are working together,” said Congresswoman Michelle Eunjoo Steel from the 48th Congressional District of California.
China is a great threat to the world, she asserted.
“The only thing we really have to know is China is a big threat ... very selfishly, they want to spread out and expand all full world. They're not going to be happy until the takeover,” Rep Steel said. So, this is a time to strengthen the India-US relationship. This relationship is more important than ever, she said.
“That's why I work with the Indian American community in my district,” she said noting that she is a member of the Indian American Caucus.
Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, one of the four Indian Americans in the U.S. Congress, in his address said India’s greatest export is Indian Americans.
“We know all about India from where it started to where it is now. We know it is the fastest-growing major economy in the world. It's one of the largest economies in the world. We know about its great technological developments great agriculture, and inventions. We know about so much progress but let me tell you about its greatest export. Its greatest export is none other than you...Indian Americans,” he said.
“We are allies and we need to remain allies and work together because there are countries out there that don't want to see you succeed,” said Congressman Buddy Carter from Georgia.
“I am a strong supporter of India and Indo-US relationship,” Congressman Brad Sherman said adding that India is a central anchor to America’s Indo-Pacific strategy. He supported the CAATSA waiver for India. India needs to have all options available for its defence in view of the threat being posed by China, Mr. Sherman said.
Dr Jashvant Patel, CEO of the U.S. Indian Relationship Council, President of Sardar Patel Fund for Sanatan Sanskruti, and chairman of the Organising Committee welcomed the guests.
“As a community, we are proud of the significant strides we have made in the past 75 years. This includes everything from the announcements in the healthcare technology, human rights, sustainability, environmental health, global warming,” he said.
“Despite our large populations and lack of resources, innovation is at the forefront of what we do,” Dr Patel said.
Several eminent Indian Americas spoke on the occasion including Dr. Bharat Barai, Ashok Bhatt, Harish Thakkar, Narasimha Koppula, and Rakhi Israni.
“The relationship between the two countries will bring peace, prosperity, and security, not only just to our two countries, but also to many other countries. So, let's get ready to make the effort and contribute to the betterment of mankind,” Dr. Barai said.
The event was marked by a cultural extravaganza with performances from, Swaradhish Dr Bharat Mohan Balvalli, Playback singer and Indian Idol fame Bhavya Pandit.