Dr. Srinivasa celebrated for strengthening India/Guyana ties
It was an emotional Wednesday evening as four years of service were packed into one night when scores of persons gathered to bid farewell to the outgoing Indian High Commissioner to Guyana, Dr. K.J Srinivasa.
Officials from across the political divide, private sector, diplomatic corps and civil society all gathered at the High Commissioner’s Happy Acres, East Coast Demerara residence to honour the extensive work of Dr Srinivasa.
Reflecting on the work that has fostered closer ties between Guyana and India, Dr Srinivasa said since commencing his duties in Guyana on August 13, 2019, there have been significant strides made for both nations.
His departure is expected before the end of the week as he is needed for duties in his homeland at the Ministry of Foreign External Affairs and for the upcoming G20 Summit. The High Commissioner on Wednesday night described his work in Guyana as a major honour that has granted him access to not only the cultures of the nation but also showed him how deeply connected Guyana and India are.
“For a diplomat in professional life, one of the highest honours is to serve as a member or High Commissioner. I feel it was my good fortune and privilege to have my first ambassadorial assignment of my life in Guyana.
“Along with my high commission colleagues, we have indeed embarked upon many joint ventures with the Guyanese government and the people of Guyana…In providing key developmental partnership for Guyana has been the basic important pillar of bilateral cooperation,” Dr Srinivasa said.
Notably, the High Commissioner has conducted significant work in Guyana as he supported the many developmental projects on Guyana’s agenda; these include leveraging Guyana’s newfound oil wealth to attract Indian businesses, advancing training programmes for the armed forces, support for ICT initiatives- one of which the High Commissioner’s son is involved- support for infrastructural development among many more programmes and projects that strengthened the bilateral ties.
“Our aim is to develop the technical capacity of Guyana so that the Guyanese can lead their developing story without having to depend on others. Indian experts who are now being identified to deliver improvements in various sectors like energy, agriculture, etc.
“I’m very happy that we could provide them with skills training, capacity building collaborated on important issues like climate change environmental protection and took up the development of initiatives in healthcare, agriculture, renewable energy, infrastructure, etc,” he said.
Dr Srinivasa held dual portfolios as High Commissioner to several other CARICOM member states.
To this end, Vice President Dr Bharrat Jagdeo highlighted the work in the region and said the shared values and interests between the two nations have allowed for the deepening of bilateral relations and provided opportunities for economic growth and development.
“I know that in his future endeavors, he’s going to remain closely connected to Guyana and the bilateral agenda that we have between our two countries so we take comfort in that because he has great institutional knowledge of the burgeoning economic and social ties between our two countries,” the Vice President said.
He also extended gratitude for India’s interest in assisting Guyana as it embarks on its developmental journey.
“We believe that countries like India, don’t have a doctrinaire but a more practical approach to finding solutions for climate change, but at the same time allowing people to grow out of poverty, expand welfare,” Jagdeo said.
With multiple projects ongoing through bilateral arrangements, Dr Jagdeo said he believes that Dr Srinivasa’s input in getting Guyana’s plans highlighted and moving is a reflection of the High Commissioner’s strong will and passion for development, as well as an appreciation for the country.