Highly respected Managing Director and Editor in Chief of The Hindu N. Ram will be in town over the weekend to actively participate at the Rotary South Asia Conference on Development and Cooperation in Colombo from 4-6 September.
Ram will moderate the first plenary session titled “Reaching within – Bonding South” on the inaugural day of the conference on Sunday. President Mahinda Rajapaksa is scheduled to inaugurate the top conference on Sunday morning.
The session to be moderated by Ram which will be philosophical and motivational will focus on the imperative for cooperation amongst South Asians. It will have Central Bank Governor Nivard Cabraal and Pakistan’s Senior Minister and Commerce Minister Makdoom Amin Fahim as speakers with Rotary International Past Director Sushil Gupta as the session chair.
Overall around 300 delegates and speakers of repute from the corporate and state sectors from the South Asia region, comprising countries, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka are scheduled to attend the conference.
Among participants are Wockhardt Chairman and former President of Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry Habil Khorakiwala, Hero Group Managing Director and CEO Sunil Kant Munjal and Narayana Hrudayalaya Hospital’s Cardiac Surgeon Dr. Devi Shetty, considered as the Henry Ford of heart surgery, all from India whilst several other top names are slated from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nepal as well. Among them are President of SAARC Chamber Bangladesh Anisul Huq, and President of Fed Chamber of Commerce, Pakistan Haji Gulam Ali.
Apart from Pakistan’s Senior Minister Fahim some of the political personalities who will attend the Conference are India’s Minister of Law and Justice Salman Khurshid, Bangladesh Minister Womens Affairs Dr. Sheron Sharmin Chowdhury and Sri Lanka’s Advisor to President and currently Colombo Mayoral candidate Milinda Moragoda.
Rotary International President Kalyan Banerjee and The Rotary Foundation Chairman Bill Boyd, former Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF and Asst Secretary-General of the UN Gul Chandra Gautam are some of the other popular personalities. Among regional media personalities include Commonwealth Journalists Association International President HJassan Shariar and Sakal Media Group Chairman Pratap Pawar.
A plethora of Sri Lankan experts including business leaders will also address the conference.
The primary objective of the conference is to have discussions and deliberations on close cooperation in areas of economic, health, education and culture among South Asian countries and seek to establish a declaration that could be further pursued with the respective governments. Rotary plays a role as a ‘catalyst’ of hosting the conference.