Scores of the Indian community living in Botswana thronged the Indian High commission on Monday to celebrate their country’s seventieth independence day. The celebrations were also marking 50th years of cooperation between Botswana and India. The two nations have been enjoying a cordial working relationship and the Indian High Commissioner Dr Ketan Shukla feels it needs to be celebrated. India just like Botswana is a country that prides itself with its culture. Different cultural groups took to the stage to display their cultural dances and practices to the delight of the audience that included both the young the old. Dr Shukla commended the Indian community to have kept their culture even though they are miles away from home. “I would like to commend all the performers for keeping the Indian culture and encourage them to carry on with the spirit,” he said. He also acknowledged Botswana government’s stance of letting all people practice their culture freely. Even the message from of the President of India which was read by Dr Shukla emphasised on culture. He said one unique feature that has held India together is their respect for each other’s cultures, values and beliefs.
As Indians celebrate their 70 years of independence they also pride themselves of their fast growing economy. India has been cited as one of the countries with the fastest growing economies in the world. Dr Shukla has therefore called on the Indians to come together to further improve the country’s economy. “It is time to join hands to cooperate, innovate and advance to create a future which will economically empower 600 million youth,” he appealed. As a peaceful nation India has always been forging for relations with other countries to bring peace and security to the people of the world. Having made great achievements through their foreign policy Dr Shukla believes that they have every right to celebrate. “Our foreign policy has shown considerable dynamism in recent times. We have reinvigorated our historic bonds of friendship with traditional partners of Africa and Asia Pacific.” Shukla went on to say India’s focus in foreign policy will remain on peaceful co-existence and harnessing technology and resources for its economic development. The country’s recent initiatives have enhanced among others energy security, promoted food security, and created international partnerships, a development worth celebrating. The Indian independence celebrations come only a month before Botswana has her golden jubilee celebrations of independence which will be held on September 30, 2016.