“I welcome the re-establishment of the . The timing is poignant as people across the world celebrate 75 years of Indian independence.
“I’m proud of Labour’s work with the Indian diaspora in the UK, particularly in strengthening ties between the UK and India. British Indians make an enormous contribution to our economy, culture, and politics. I’ll welcome working with the LCIO on our mission to form the next Labour government.”
This statement on the sidelines of this week’s party conference in Liverpool by Leader, Sir Keir Starmer, signifies another attempt by the Opposition party to connect with the Indian diaspora electorate.
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During a special India-focussed event, the recently revived was formally launched and hailed its mission of strengthening India-UK relations.
It comes after some years of perceived , something which seems to have shifted this year with the attendance of India’s Deputy High Commissioner to the UK, Sujit Ghosh.
The speakers at the event, chaired by British Indian MP , included veteran British Indian MP Virendra Sharma and party colleagues such as Barry Gardiner and Paula Barker.
“I’ve visited India a number of times and was really impressed by the organisation of women’s groups and how they are tackling the climate crisis,” said Angela Rayner, the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, who also spoke about the Indian diaspora's enriching influence on the UK with specific reference to the “amazing nurses from Kerala” employed in the state-funded .
Other speakers at the event included LCIO's Steering Committee members made up of prominent British Indian community leaders such as Neena Gill, Krish Raval, , and Gurinder Singh Josan.
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The LCIO announced its relaunch on Independence Day last month to celebrate the 75th anniversary of India’s independence. Its stated aim is to close the gap between British Indians and the Labour Party; to foster inclusive sustainable growth for both countries through a trade agreement; to deepen cultural and educational ties between Britain and India; and engage with India as a “partner and critical friend” on issues of concern for British Indians.
The organisation, which traces its roots back to India’s independence movement, says the reason for the reinvigoration this year is to inclusively connect to Labour and to engage India on the big issues of our time – namely the climate crisis, sustainable development and enhancing internationalism.