Preparations in Full Swing in Australia for Modi's Visit

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Sydney, Nov 06: The preparations are on in full swing in Australia to welcome prime minister Narendra Modi. The Indian community is eagerly looking forward to the visit of Modi, who will have a warm reception here.

Indian Australian Community Federation (IACF) spokesperson Balesh Singh Dhankhar, who is also the organizer of Allphones Arena Events here, said on Thursday that the people are so keen on the arrival of Prime Minister Modi that they have got more than 21000 registrations within three days from across Australia.

"The Indian-Australian Community Foundation is hosting community reception for Prime Minister Modi in Sydney. This is the only community reception or event that we are holding in Sydney and it will be much larger in scale because this would be the largest event for any foreign leader in Australia. We are expecting more than 17000 to 18000 people to attend this event and we are even getting inquiries now also when the tickets are all closed," said Dhankar.

"The capacity of the venue is 16000 people, we are trying to accommodate as many as possible, we are trying to invite people from other states and people have registered from so many different places. We are immensely happy to see such reaction from the Indian community, but we are little bit sad that we cannot accommodate everyone," he added.

He also said that looking at the excitement of the Indian Diaspora in Australia for this community reception of Prime Minister Modi, they have devised a very unique system so that all the communities can be involved.

Giving details about Prime Minister Modi's schedule in Australia, Dhankar added, "His trip will be jam-packed like it was in America. He is directly coming to Brisbane for G20 summit which is a very tight schedule, straight from there he is coming to Sydney for Grand Community Reception which is expected to be largest for any foreign leader in Australia and it would be attended by more than 17,000 people."

"From Sydney, he will be going to Canberra for Joint Parliament Session which would be first addressed by any Indian PM. Then he will be going to Melbourne for one business event and another banquet hosted by Australian PM Tony Abbott. After that he will go to Fiji for other community events and some official meetings," Dhankar said.

He also said that there will be various cuisines arranged for him and there will also be a "Modi Express" which will be flagged off by the Premier of Victoria.

"Prime Minister Modi's visit to Australia will boost morale of Indians staying here. Secondly, it will become easy for the businessmen here to work in India. Thirdly, in other projects like scientific, climate, etc also India-Australia ties will boost up," said IACF president Dr. Nihal Agar.

Meanwhile, the Indian-Australians here share their joy ahead of Prime Minister Modi's visit to the country.

"In Australia, there are more than 200 community organizations. We are proud that Indian-Australian communities together are hosting a reception for the beloved PM Modi," said an Indian-Australian Kiran Desai.

"Being the part of a Gujarati Samaj, of NSW, all the Gujaratis are proud to welcome our beloved Prime Minister Modi to Sydney. I think this is the first time after 20 years that an Indian PM is visiting Australia," he added.

"This is going to be good for the cultural part as well. The Gujarati diaspora is looking forward to his visit. I have heard him many times. A cultural program is going to take place. His visit will be good for the Indian youth staying here who have just seen him on TV and read about him," said another Indian-Australian Nimesh Shah.

"The level of excitement in the community with regard to Prime Minister Modi's arrival is tremendous. We have noticed that community organizations have shown lot of interest in coming forward and registering and attending the programmes. We have also noticed that little children are also very keen on understanding the visit. It is really great and we all are looking forward to that," said Lakshmi, a local resident.

Prime Minister Modi will be travelling to Myanmar, Australia and Fiji next week, where he will participate in various summits and bilateral meetings.

Starting November 11, the Prime Minister will be travelling to these three countries, where he hopes to strengthen relations between India and its allies, especially nations belonging to the Asia-Pacific region.

The last Indian Prime Minister to visit Australia was Rajiv Gandhi in 1986. Prime Minister Modi's visit to Myanmar, Australia and Fiji is his first trip abroad since his hugely successful trip to the United States in September. It follows the state visit paid by Australia Prime Minister Tony Abbott earlier this year.

With ANI input.

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