Washington: Eleven Indian parliamentarians from seven national and regional parties are here for interactions with senior US government officials and thought leaders as part of a leadership programme they are doing at Yale University.
Interactions in Washington to better understand the US economic and political system are a regular feature of the India-Yale Parliamentary Leadership Programme. The sixth edution of the programme began at New Haven, Connecticut based university on June 20 and will conclude Saturday.
The fragile global economy, the evolving political and economic crises in the Middle East and Europe, and the 2012 US Presidential elections, along with the challenges of leadership, dominated the discussions during the six-day academic programme on the Yale campus.
More than 70 members of India's parliament have to date participated in the programme launched in 2007, in collaboration with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and the India-US Forum of Parliamentarians.
The first five rounds of the programme were held in October 2007, June 2008, June 2009, June 2010 and June 2011 respectively.
Yale President Richard C. Levin said the leadership "programme will provide the parliamentarians with opportunities to critically think about the challenges of leadership and to explore freely, away from the legislative arena, the issues facing India."
Baijayant (Jay) Panda, the chairman of the India-US Forum of Parliamentarians, stated that "This annual leadership programme for Indian parliamentarians at Yale University, now in its sixth year, has been widely appreciated by those of us serving in politics."
FICCI President R. V. Kanoria noted the "programme is designed to provide Indian parliamentarians with opportunities to critically think about the current global issues and leadership challenges in a neutral environment."
FICCI Secretary General Rajiv Kumar said "Yale University will help the parliamentarians in achieving a greater and more informed engagement in public policy discussions."
The participating 2012 parliamentarians are: Baijayant Panda, Biju Janata Dal; Dinesh Trivedi, All India Trinamool Congress; Birendra Prasad Baishya, Asom Gana Parishad; Thomas Sangma and Vandana Chavan Nationalist Congress Party; Madhu Goud Yaskhi, Manicka Tagore and Mukut Mithi, Indian National Congress; Shivkumar Udasi and Kamlesh Paswan, Bharatiya Janata Party; and Ajoy Kumar, Jharkhand Vikaas Morcha.
(Arun Kumar can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)