Taking the Seychelles-India relationship to a new level – new Indian high commissioner accredited
The newly accredited Indian High Commissioner to Seychelles Sanjay Kumar Panda (Mervyn Marie, Seychelles News Agency)
(Seychelles News Agency) - The new Indian High Commissioner to Seychelles Sanjay Kumar Panda is aiming to take the bilateral relationship between Seychelles and India to "a new level."
Panda said this in an interview with the local press at State House in the Seychelles capital of Victoria this morning after he had presented his credentials to President James Michel.
The newly accredited Indian High Commissioner whose last post was Deputy Ambassador of his country to Japan says he has come to the archipelago with “an open mind.”
"We have got excellent ties, but it is important that we now work very hard to take it to the next level...it is very important to have the connectivity and people to people contact to develop tourism infrastructure to get more people to visit Seychelles for interactions; that is how the two countries can really come closer, for now the government are close that why it is important for the people also come close to each other," said Panda.
Seychelles has already taken steps to attract more Indian visitors to Seychelles, with a high level delegation heading to India last week led by the Indian ocean island nation’s tourism minister Alain St Ange.
The new head of India’s diplomatic mission in Seychelles said he intends to nurture the already existing ties between Seychelles and India to ensure that the traditional, historical and cultural links that exist is translate into a permanent friendship and ties across diverse fields.
Efforts to recognise India as one of the Seychellois people’s key origin was given a new boost last year with the first edition of the Seychelles-India Day in October last year with the participation of Top Indian chefs and artists.
The event spearheaded by the Seychelles Ministry of Tourism and Culture with the help of the archipelago’s Indian High Commission and Indian business community now features on the calendar of events in Seychelles.
The second Seychelles India Day is set to take place between October 03-05 this year.
Addressing the issue of cooperation which has seen several Seychellois trained in India Panda has indicated that such cooperation would continue while new areas of cooperation would also be developed.
“We have an important maritime corporation but at the same time it is important that we diversify our ties and also develop tourism and people to people contact, continue our corporation….….trade and commerce is something that could be explored.
High Commissioner Sanjay Kumar Panda who will be based in the Seychelles capital of Victoria is the 15th diplomat to be given the task of maintaining the India-Seychelles relationship.
He replaces Thanglura Darlong who left the island nation in June at the end of a 3 year mandate.