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Yale University Launches Leadership Program for India’s Parliamentarians


New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.A. — Yale University, widely recognized for educating leaders in government, business, and civil society worldwide, has launched the India – Yale Parliamentary Leadership Program, in collaboration with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry and the India-U.S. Forum of Parliamentarians.

The inaugural cohort of members of India’s parliament will come to the Yale University campus in New Haven, Connecticut beginning on October 9 for a five-day leadership program with Yale faculty that will be complemented by a three-day program of meetings, discussions, and interactions with U.S. government and business officials in Washington, D.C.

Yale President Richard C. Levin stated that “The India – Yale Parliamentary Leadership Program underscores Yale’s longstanding commitment to educating our students for service and leadership. We have now gone a step further to include emerging and mid-career leaders. The program will provide the parliamentarians with opportunities to critically think about the challenges of leadership and to explore freely, away from the legislative arena, the issues facing India.”

Yale has a long and distinguished record of educating government leaders. Since its founding in 1701, Yale has educated leaders and public servants for all sectors of American society and, increasingly, around the world. Yale’s tradition of leadership and public service is found in every branch of government in the United States. This tradition of public service by Yale graduates is exemplified by four of the last six American presidents, 526 members of United States Congress, 55 U.S. Cabinet secretaries, 19 Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States, and former heads of state of Germany, Korea, and Mexico. Hillary Clinton—among the leading presidential candidates in the 2008 U.S. presidential election—is also a Yale alumnae. Yale’s graduates are leaders in all areas of human endeavor—the arts, business, law, medicine, science, and civil society, and have led or are leading hundreds of the most recognizable global brands.

In recent years, recognizing that the complexity and demands of geo-political and economic affairs during the twenty-first century will require that governments at all levels have inspired leaders, Yale has sought to engage the rising leadership of the world’s most consequential countries through leadership development programs in the United States. Yale has since 2004 held governmental programs for senior leaders from China, Japan, Kazakhstan, and the United Arab Emirates.

The program was developed in consultation with the parliamentarians and the India-U.S. Forum of Parliamentarians and reflects the belief that exposure to new fields and ideas can offer insight, perspective, and new ways of thinking for one’s own work. Lectures, discussions, and private meetings with renowned practitioners in their areas will complement the curricular activities of the Yale program. Faculty for the program are drawn from experts at Yale, as well as research institutes, government offices, and the private sector.

The topics covered in the inaugural India-Yale Parliamentary Leadership Program include Economic and Social Development in India, Democracy and the Secular State, India – China Economic Relations, Affirmative Action, Climate Change and Sustainable Development, Foreign Direct Investment in India, Strategy, Negotiation and Game Theory for the Politician, Strategic Thinking for the Politician, and Energy Security.

The participating parliamentarians are Raashid Alvi (Rajya Sabha - Indian National Congress Party - Andhra Pradesh); Deepender Singh Hooda (Lok Sabha - Indian National Congress Party – Haryana); Naveen Jindal (Lok Sabha - Indian National Congress Party – Haryana); Robert Kharshiing (Rajya Sabha - Nationalist Congress Party – Meghalaya); Chandan Mitra (Rajya Sabha - Bharatiya Janata Party Supported – Nominated); Baijayant Panda (Rajya Sabha - Biju Janata Dal Party – Orissa); Dharmendra Pradhan (Lok Sabha - Bharatiya Janata Party – Orissa); R.C.S. Reddy (Rajya Sabha - Telugu Desam Party - Andhra Pradesh); Shahid Siddiqui (Rajya Sabha - Samajwadi Party - Uttar Pradesh); Dushyant Singh (Lok Sabha - Bharatiya Janata Party – Rajasthan); Tiruchi Siva (Rajya Sabha - Dravida Munnetra Kazagham Party - Tamil Nadu); and Madhu Goud Yaskhi (Lok Sabha - Indian National Congress Party - Andhra Pradesh). The parliamentarians will be accompanied by Ramesh Chandran (Executive Director, India - U.S. Forum of Parliamentarians, and Advisor, Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry) and Ranjana Khanna (Assistant Secretary General - Americas, Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry).

The India - U.S. Forum of Parliamentarians is a body of leading Indian parliamentarians representing the broad political spectrum of India from both Houses of Parliament — the Lok Sabha (Lower House) and the Rajya Sabha (Upper House). The forum was formed five years ago with the support of FICCI. The forum, constituted on the lines of “Senate Friends of India” Group and the “India Caucus” in the United States Congress, today, has more than 130 lawmakers cutting across party lines, with many of its members heading or serving in vital policy planning parliamentary committees. Baijayant Panda, a prominent member of the Biju Janata Dal from Orissa in the Rajya Sabha, is the current Chairman of the Forum and Abhishek M. Singhvi, senior Congress member of parliament and spokesperson of the Indian National Congress Party is the Co-Chairman. Omar Abdullah is the convener of the Forum.

Encompassing all aspects of Indo-U.S. relations, the Forum makes an effort to facilitate wider exchange of dialogue on crucial issues of bilateral and global concerns between parliamentarians of India and their counterparts in the U.S., senior U.S. government administration officials, business leaders, opinion-makers and the Indian-American community. The Forum through Track II initiatives adds important parliamentary dimension to the bilateral relations.


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