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I take this opportunity to extend a very warm welcome from the State of Chhattisgarh to all of you, to this PravasiBharatiya Divas.

  1. I am enthralled to address you all who have always kept India alive in your hearts despite being away from India. You have created your identity outside your home despite all odds. You expanded your tentacles beyond your umbilical cord to create new opportunities for yourself, your family, your society and your country. Today, it’s not only Indians butIndia that lives in more than 200 countries of the world. You all have made it possible. All of you have kept India alive in your hearts which created mini India wherever you stayed. You have been India’s brand ambassador to the world. People know India through you.
  2. Most of you might have left India in search of better opportunity mostly at the time when opportunities in India were limited. But today the scenario is different. The world is looking at India for its unique demographic dividend. Modi ji, our Prime Minister has induced new energy in Indiaand now the country is on an accelerated growth path.It is an opportune time to establish, connect and discuss the opportunities that India has to offer for development and growth.
  3. Let me tell you about Chhattisgarh, a young State of India with a rich history.This is a unique state where India’s oldest tribal community and India’s most recent smart city are developing together. Created in the year 2000, Chhattisgarh is bubbling with new ideas and the restless energy of a 16-year old, making its mark as it contributes immensely to India’s growth and prosperity. We have travelled through a decade of growth, reforms, and transformation.
  4. Chhattisgarh is the land of opportunities. It is blessed with abundance of minerals, metals and forests. We have a population of about 28 million people, living in 135 thousand square kilometre.We are identified as one of the richest biodiversity habitats in India and have one of the most dense forest covers in the country. Rich in wildlife, the state is home to several species of exotic flora and fauna. Chhattisgarh is endowed with a rich cultural heritage that includes its varied crafts, folk dances, food, theatre and natural diversity.
  5. Chhattisgarh is full of surprises in true sense. Chitrakote falls – the Niagara of India is nestled around wildlife and forests. With three wildlife sanctuaries and 11 national parks, Chhattisgarh is also home to a variety of eco-tourism highlights. Recently opened, Jungle Safari in Naya Raipur is the largest in Asia.Dense forests, national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and enchanting waterfalls make us a major tourist attraction.Handicrafts fromBastarand Kondagaonare known to the world.Tasar silk produced in Chhattisgarh has also earned us a great fame in the world.
  6. Chhattisgarh is strategically located at the heart of the country, which provides us with the opportunity to be the logistics and supply chain hub of the region. The State provides direct access to a market size of 520 million people across the 7 adjoining states. We have been focused on developing world class infrastructure including rail, road and air connectivity to leverage the advantage of our strategic location.
  7. Chhattisgarh has undertaken unprecedented reforms to create an enabling business eco-system. World Bank has ranked us among top 5 States in India for ‘Ease of Doing Business’ for last two consecutive years.
  8. I am happy to share that Chhattisgarh is the 2nd best State in India attracting investments, with regard to cumulative proposed investments since the year 2010. In coming 4-5 years, Government and public sectorsare going to invest about 40 billion dollars for infrastructure development in Chhattisgarh.
  9. Development and expansion of rail and road network, airports, industrial infrastructure, smart cities, power generation and distribution network and public sector enterprises in the State are key focus for us in the years to come. Our rail network which is more than 100 years old is getting doubled in the next 05 years. We are upgrading 35,000 km of road network. Three new airports in Chhattisgarh are coming up to boost connectivity in the State.
  10. In the last 10 years, we have made remarkable progress in the core sector industries. Chhattisgarh is major produce of India’s iron & steel, cement, aluminium and tin. India’s first power surplus State, Chhattisgarh provides good quality power, 24X7, at economical rates. Having built a strong base of core sector industries, now, we want to realize our potential in non-core and sunrise sectors like IT/ ITeS, Electronics, Manufacturing, Engineering, Food Processing, Logistics & Warehousing, Automobiles, Railways, Industrial Infrastructure development etc. For all such sunrise sectors, we provide best-in-class incentives through our industrial policies.
  11. 30,000 professionals and about 100 thousand skilled workforce from Chhattisgarh are entering into market every year nurturing and supporting business. We are the first State in India to make ‘right to skill development’ an enforceable act. Almost all premium educational institutes including IIT, IIIT, IIM, AIIMS, National Law University, National Agriculture University are there in Chhattisgarh to provide professionals equipped with high end skills and knowledge.
  12. We understand that this is the era of Start-ups and innovation and we know the huge potential of these start-ups that can be a game changer for any economy. The ‘Start up Chhattisgarh’ mission started by us, has got great response from our youth. I am happy to share that in the boot camps conducted all across the State, we have received over 4,000 innovative ideas for start-ups. We are organizing these ideas into business models and will incubate them as Start-ups. We are one of the few States in India having a dedicated policy for start-ups, entrepreneurship and innovation. Early bird start-ups in Chhattisgarh have been exempted from all State taxes apart from additional fiscal incentives.
  13. Naya Raipur, the first green-field smart city of India is developed across 237 square km and gives a true smart-city experience with world class infrastructure. The vibrant city of Naya Raipur has got a lot to offer, which includes Convention Centre, SEZs, Office complexes, Knowledge Park, Health City, Golf Course, Theme Township, International Cricket Stadium, Shopping Malls, Multiplexes and all other amenitieswhich make a city vibrant and at par with developed global cities. First phase of the city across 80 squarekm has already been completed.
  14. Naya Raipur provides ready-to-operate, plug-and-play infrastructure for high-end non-polluting industries who want to leverage the core advantages for business in Chhattisgarh. This is a perfect location for sectors like IT/ ITeS, electronics and logistics sector units to set up shop. We are also in process of establishing IT Special Economic Zone in Naya Raipur, which will provide addition fiscal incentives and tax exemptions to the units.
  15. The State of Chhattisgarh welcomes businesses to leverage its strategic location, from where they can implement growth strategies and manage & integrate their business operations for the region and beyond. Eligible businesses with substantive plans to grow through conducting high value activities in state may apply to qualify for various incentives under its progressive policies.
  16. I would like to conclude by highlighting six key differentiators, which make Chhattisgarh an ideal destination for your new economic activities:
    • Ease of Doing Business with a proactive and responsive bureaucracy
    • Cost advantage owing to low input cost and low distribution cost
    • Availability of skilled and professionally qualified talent
    • Naya Raipur – established smart city and a hotbed for investment
    • Availability of world class industrial infrastructure and pro industrial atmosphere and social infrastructure
    • Business friendly policies and a stable government
  17. I would like to once again express our keenness on developing strong business partnership with you. I invite you to come to Chhattisgarh to witness the splendid opportunities available. I want to thank you all for participating and being an amazing audience. We look forward to hosting you in Chhattisgarh because seeing is believing.