BHUBANESWAR: Governor SC Jamir on Monday stressed on the historical and civilisational links that are shared by Odisha and Indonesia. Addressing the inaugural function of the three-day Kalinga-Indonesia dialogue here, Jamir said people of Kalinga were the pioneers of Indian colonisation in South-East Asia, particularly in Indonesia, Thailand and Myanmar.
“Indian traders, adventurers, teachers and priests had a dominating influence in South-East Asia. Hinduism and Buddhism spread to these regions from India and for many centuries, existed there with mutual toleration,” he said. Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said the sectors of tourism, manufacturing, mineral processing and information technology can be cornerstones for an emergent economic partnership between Odisha and Indonesia.
The immense human resources potential of the State which has been perfected through skill development programmes can spur the growing economy of Indonesia, he said. Naveen proposed that a direct flight from Bhubaneswar to Jakarta or Bali can be a potential game-changer in cementing the ties for the future generations. Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Gas Dharmendra Pradhan said, “This dialogue will relate us to our glorious past and pave way for great future.
We need to use our glorious past and cultural linkages as the foundation for taking up trade and development to a new dimension.’’ With textile market sliding southwards from China, Odisha can act as a major raw material supplier, and Paradip with its significant port operations in the recent past, would stand as a primary gateway to South-East Asia, Pradhan added.
The programme was organised by Kalinga Lanka Foundation in association with Indian Council for Cultural Relations, Department of Culture and Ravenshaw University. Among others, Tourism Minister Ashok Panda, Chairman of Kalinga-Indonesia Dialogue Lalit Mansingh, former Ambassador of India to Indonesia Navrekha Sharma, Director General, ICCR Amarendra Khatua, Ambassador of Indonesia in India Rizali Indrakesuma, Vice-Chancellor, Ravenshaw University, Prof Prakash Chandra Sarangi and president of Kalinga Lanka Foundation DP Bagchi also spoke.