Mumbai – United States Ambassador to India, Richard R. Verma, visited Bhopal on May 25, 2016 for his first official visit to the state of Madhya Pradesh.
During his visit, Ambassador Verma met with the Honorable Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan to discuss U.S.-India cooperation, including investment opportunities for U.S. companies and clean energy initiatives. The Ambassador also met Chief Secretary Anthony De Sa, and Minister for Commerce, Industry and Employment, Public Sector Undertakings, Sports and Youth Welfare, Religious Trusts and Religious Affairs, Ms. Yashodara Raje Scindia.
In addition to his official meetings, Ambassador Verma met religious leaders and students at Taj-ul-Masajid, the largest mosque in India. “This stunning mosque is a symbol of India’s architectural treasure and represents the richness of India’s cultural heritage,” said Ambassador Verma. “Among India’s strongest assets are its diverse religious communities, and it was very special to spend some time learning about the work and education that takes place here at the Taj-ul-Masajid.”
Later in the day, Ambassador Verma visited the “Gauravi” One Stop Crisis Center and interacted with staff and survivors gender-based violence (GBV). At the Center, Ambassador Verma learned about joint efforts by civil society groups and government to address and counter GBV issues. “The Gauravi Center does absolutely incredible work,” said the Ambassador. “The collaboration between the government and NGO are commendable, and I applaud their work to address gender based violence.”
Ambassador Verma also spent time with students at the “Parvarish” Museum School, which was founded in 2005 by the NGO Organization for Awareness of Integrated Social Security (OASIS) to serve slum children. Ambassador Verma interacted with current students and several program graduates who are now in college. During his interactions, Ambassador Verma stressed the need for these students to continue working towards their goals. “It was a joy to interact with the students at Parvarish,” said the Ambassador. “The engaging, hands-on learning environment made me think anew about innovative options for meeting educational needs. To see the good and important work going on at Parvarish was truly inspirational.”
The U.S. Consulate General in Mumbai looks forward to deepening and broadening its partnership with Bhopal and Madhya Pradesh across all sectors: more two-way trade and investment, along with greater collaboration in health, science, and clean energy.