Saturday, January 7, 2012

[] Pension, health scheme for semi-skilled NRIs on Cards


Under a massive security cover and a lower-than-expected turnout, the government today urged its global citizens to become partners in the growth story.
Opening the three-day annual congregation of Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and Persons of Indian Origins (PIOs) at the Birla Auditorium in the Pink City today, the government announced slew of steps to attract overseas Indians to look at India as an attractive investment destination.
In one such announcement, Overseas Indian Affairs Minister Vayalar Ravi said the government will soon initiate a pension and health insurance scheme for semi-skilled NRIs.
The minister, while speaking to journalists at the sidelines of an event, said the Cabinet has given its nod to the scheme and it will be formally announced by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh tomorrow.
As part of this, the PM is expected to announce a pension and life insurance fund for overseas Indian workers.
Ravi said the scheme was voluntary and any overseas worker can opt for it.
Under the scheme, the government will contribute Rs 1,000 annually for all subscribers who contribute between Rs 1,000 and Rs 12,000 per year. Women overseas workers will enjoy a special additional co-contribution of Rs 1,000 a year.
Ravi stressed that apart from promoting investments in India, the event intended to find ways to make younger generation of NRIs understand about India.
The summit, which is expected to be attended by over 10 state chief ministers began today with three pre-conference seminars which were addressed by Ravi, Health and Family Welfare Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad and Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahay.
Azad asked for the assistance of the global Indians to increase the share of healthcare in GDP to 2.5 per cent from the present level of one per cent.
Azad acknowledged the role played by Indian diaspora in the global healthcare industry and requested their meaningful contribution for improving the health indicators in the country.
In a major announcement, Azad said the government was contemplating on allowing diaspora practitioners having post-graduate degrees from the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand to practice in India.
"The Government has now taken the initiative to facilitate overseas citizens of India to both practice and teach in India. The health ministry is piloting the necessary changes required in the relevant acts," he told the gathering.
He said the government was prepared to go an "extra mile to adequately liberalise policies and set up a single window within the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to ease the process of your meaningful participation."
Source: BS   08-01-2012
Best Regards
Prakash Nair

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