NaMo wows Sydney

In an encore of his thunderous Madison Square Gardens performance in New York, PM Narendra Modi enthralled the strong Indian diaspora and senior Australian politicians alike at a packed Allphones Arena in Sydney as he spoke emphatically about the need to fulfill the aspirations of a young Indian nation.
Addressing a frenzied audience of around 21,000 people, who kept chanting “Modi, Modi” throughout his 90-minute speech, the PM sought to woo the NRI community as he announced a two-month deadline for the merger of OCI (Overseas Citizen of India) and PIO (Persons of Indian Origin) status. He also assured Australian tourists of visa-on-arrival facility in a speech laced with analogies drawn from cricket, which binds the two countries.
Before he walked up the podium to a deafening roar from the audience, many of whom were playing drums, Modi shook hands with former Australian Test cricketer Brett Lee and umpire Simon Taufel.
“Let’s open the windows and allow fresh air to come in,” Modi said referring to his government’s efforts to discard laws considered obsolete. Criticizing the UPA, he said while the earlier government was happy making new laws, he was “happier” getting rid of them.
Visibly moved by the boisterous reception, Modi said he was honoured and humbled and that he would never forget this day. “I know that behind this affection lies expectations. Yes. We want to create the India you are dreaming of. This welcome, this respect, this enthusiasm, I dedicate it to the people of India,” said Modi, the first Indian PM to visit Australia in 28 years.
“If you start from India at night, you reach Australia by morning, but the PM of India took 28 years to come,” Modi said. “I’ve come to assure that you will never have to wait for 28 years again,” he added.
Modi said his government was working on visa-on-arrival for Australian tourists and said the PIO and OCI status will be merged ahead of Pravasi Bhartiya Divas to be held from January 7 in Ahmedabad.
Modi had announced the merger during his visit to the US in September but had not given a timeline then. PM Narendra Modi also referred to economic reforms unveiled by his government and said India had become an attractive destination for investment. He also said FDI in railways had been hiked to 100% and hoped that Australian companies would invest in creating rail infrastructure in the country.
The PM called upon Indians across the world to convert the atmosphere of hope and optimism into a reality of meeting the expectations and aspirations of people in India. Modi said on the basis of his experience of the last six months, he could see no reason why the aspirations of millions of Indians could not be fulfilled.
He referred to Swami Vivekananda's dream of seeing Mother India as a `Vishva Guru' once again, and said he believed that dream would be a reality .“Do you share the dream?“ he asked the cheering crowd.
Modi said he felt a greater sense of responsibility as he was the first PM born in independent India. “We did not have the fortune to fight for the country's independence. We could not die for India. But we can live for India.So we will live and struggle for India.Today , 125 crore Indians share that dream,“ he said. The PM exhorted people to recognize the strength of India's democracy . “Let us now do all we can for India's benefit. And then India will work for the benefit of mankind,“ he said. “Governments cannot make a country . People make a country ,“ he added.
Modi also stressed on the Clean India campaign saying more tourists would come if the country was cleaner. He also asked the Indian diaspora to extend their support to the campaign and said they could contribute significantly in developing the villages they come from. “I request you to contribute. God has given you so much,“ he said.

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