The 141st Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) is taking place in Belgrade, Serbia, from 13-17 October 2019. All IPU statutory bodies, including the Governing Council, Standing Committees, Committees on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians and on Middle East Questions, as well as the Forum of Women Parliamentarians and the Forum of Young MPs are all present on this occasion.
Young Odisha MP Dr. Sasmit Patra is attending the Young Parliamentarian Forum, led by Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla. He is representing India with other Indian MPs.
The other Indian members present in the delegation are MPs Shashi Tharoor, Kanimozhi Karunanidhi, Wansuk Syiem, Jugal Kishore Sharma, Bhartiben Dhirubhai Shyal, Shobha Karandlaje and Ram Kumar Verma.
While representing India, Dr. Patra took the opportunity to speak about the best practices in India and especially the Self Help Groups, Panchayati Raj Institutions and the need for an Innovation Hub with Intellectual Repository at the IPU for sharing of experiences and best practices.
He began his speech by thanking the forum and its honorable board members. He said, “Firstly let me congratulate the forum for its activities especially the good work it has start from Doha and going on to Prague and all the synergy and energy u have generated. Going forward, I believe in terms of youth policy and gender equality, which is a very important topic that needs to be there, if you have to be gender sensitive and gender neutral. Apart from that, probably if you could look at sub themes also that could come through it. Now sub themes could be in terms of empowerment. I give you a very specific example of India. In India, as you know we are working from the bottom of the pyramid up and we have Self Help Groups (SHGs). SHGs that work from the ground in the villages right up to the districts to the states and then up to the national level. Having said that there is a lot of empowerment that happens at the village level which is called as the Panchayati Raj System. This system in India actually has reservation for women up to 50% in some states, which provides a lot of empowerment for women and equal opportunities. So it may not be really relevant to more of the developed countries but especially for developing countries like India where the population is 1.3 billion. It definitely adds lots of interest and relevance if we have to take it forward. Coming to the second aspect would be in terms of training young MPs, I would like to congratulate the forum for thinking about the membership café and the training hubs which are huge innovations. But I believe looking forward towards building a new innovation hub as ecosystem where the best practices from across the world can find residence. Likewise, one best practice from all over the world can come together and we can learn from each other which could have a documentary base, would have some repository and which could then develop intellectual material that can be used effectively for training modules. So likewise each country can know about each other’s renovation so that we can bring it all together. So the idea is to go across the laterals right down from the bottom of the pyramid as well as gain from the top of the pyramid which also gains so much of ecosystem and innovations. These are the primary thoughts I would gain with all of you”.
The Forum agreed to take up the Innovation Hub idea to the Executive Board. India is adding value to the world substantially through its best practices.
Congress MP Shashi Tharoor appreciated Sasmit Patra for his idea and views. Mr. Shashi tweeted, “Thanks @sasmitpatra. Young MPs like you are the future of our politics & of our wonderful country. Great to be representing India alongside you in Belgrade”.
Dr. Sasmit Patra even replied back and tweeted, “Dr. Shashi Tharoor @ Shashitharoor is an inspiration to me on International Diplomacy. Honored to be working with him at the 141st Inter Parliamentary Union in Belgrade as part of the Indian delegation. Looking forward to learning and imbibing nuances of diplomacy at global level.
The IPU is a global inter-parliamentary institution established in 1889 by Frédéric Passy (France) and William Randal Cremer (United Kingdom). It was the first permanent forum for political multilateral negotiations. Initially, the organization was for individual parliamentarians, but has since transformed into an international organization of the parliaments of sovereign states. The IPU has permanent observer status at the United Nations General Assembly.
This year the 141st Assembly of the IPU has taken place in Belgrade, Serbia, from 13-17 October 2019. All IPU statutory bodies, including the Governing Council, Standing Committees, Committees on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians and on Middle East Questions, as well as the Forum of Women Parliamentarians and the Forum of Young MPs, are all present on this occasion.