Home / Blog / Tributes to philanthropic entrepreneur, Atlas Ramachandran

Tributes to philanthropic entrepreneur, Atlas Ramachandran

Businessman, film producer and philanthropist, MM Ramachandran, popularly known as Atlas Ramachandran has died.

The Kerala Pravasi Association (KPA) sent out tributes to the expatriate businessman, who had an active presence in the well-being of Pravasi Keralities.

“A businessman who gave employment to many people. A philanthropist who always reached out to the helpless. Beyond being an expatriate entrepreneur, Atlas Ramachandran was also actively involved in social issues of fellow Keralites. A man who persevered in adversity, he was a role model for many. He valued his peers and maintained a wide network of friends across the Arab countries. With the demise of Atlas Ramachandran, the diaspora has lost an entrepreneur” said a statement released by KPA.

Atlas Jewelry Group, which was started nearly three decades ago, had outlets in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, UAE and across Kerala. The Group had also ventured into the healthcare, real estate and film distribution sectors. Besides his business interests, he was also known as a film producer and actor. He was once ranked among the “100 most powerful Indians in the GCC”.

Home / Blog / KPA pay tributes to Kodiyeri Balakrishnan

KPA pay tributes to Kodiyeri Balakrishnan

Kerala Pravasi Association (KPA) condole the death of  CPI-M leader Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, who passed away at a Chennai hospital on October 1.

“Kodiyeri Balakrishnan’s strength was excellent leadership,” said a statement released by KPA.

“A leader with extraordinary courage and the ability to overcome adversity, Kodiyeri had distinguished himself in Kerala politics by his intervention which is respected by his opponents. He was careful to maintain relationships despite differences of opinion. Kodiyeri was one of the finest home ministers, the state has seen. He initiated revolutionary changes in the Kerala Police thereby succeeding in popularizing the police, brining them closer to the people. Kodiyeri Balakrishnan was an excellent administrator and a powerful political leader. His demise is an irreparable loss to Kerala.”

Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has been a five-term MLA from Thalassery since 1982 and has been the state Home and Tourism Minister in the V.S. Achuthanandan Cabinet. At the time of his death, he was a Politburo member of CPI-M, which is the highest decision-making body in the party.

Home / Blog / Why is KPA relevant and necessary in today’s politics?

Why is KPA relevant and necessary in today’s politics?

The Kerala Pravasi Association, founded and led by expatriates, is moving ahead with its membership campaign as they look to grow their active member partnerships. Several ward-based committees have been put in place across all districts in Kerala. The goal of these ad hoc committees will be to establish as strong upper committee through democratic elections, following which they will be made void.

Any Indian citizen of this country over the age of 18 years can become a member of KPA. KPA has adapted a transparent working style that will be led by a strong expatriate community whose main goal will be to address the basic needs and affairs of our fellow citizens and raise their standard of living.

Since its launch, KPA has faced several backlash as our goals and values have threatened other movements .

On one hand, minorities are being discouraged from joining KPA by calling it a Hindu bias and on the other hand, party members have been barefacedly called creators of Muslim appeasers.

Propaganda is active but KPA remains steadfast in their goals to bring the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) to power in Kerala. KPA is committed to push Kerala forward and denounce the previous and existing ruling parties, who have done nothing for this country. Nepotism, corruption and the archiac thinking of the leaders have left Kerala at a standstill.

Expatriates are the backbone of this country and continue to be neglected in every field. To lead this country to self-sufficiency, the diaspora community must stand unitedly with the people of this country. Let vested interests throw stones. The KPA will respond not with words, but with actions that join them together.

To every expatriate out there, KPA asks them to contemplate what is best for them. Do you want to spend more time supporting traditional politics that are unfit to last? Do you want to be part of a new political culture where political workers have not been devalued in this country?

Think and choose for yourself!

Home / Blog / Leaders of tomorrow: Women and political participation

Leaders of tomorrow: Women and political participation

Despite a widespread public acceptance of female politicians in India, the gender disparity in Indian politics continue to show that women’s political participation in the subcontinent remains low.

Whether at the highest echelons of power and at the grassroots level in social movements, women have proven their mettle nationally and regionally, yet women’s political participation and overall motivation remains low. This is despite the Indian Constitution’s provision of equal opportunity. Their lack of presence has a substantial impact on women’s empowerment and as a result with the issue of gender disparity in the country.

According to a 2020 report by the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch (NEW), less than a tenth of the over 50,000 candidates contesting federal and state elections are women.

The gender disparity in Indian politics could be the result of various factors. To being with the general notion that politics is not suited for females as it is a “male profession”. The notion that women are less suited for aggressive or loud position and those that require travel, often an infrastructural barrier, have traditionally been a deterring factor.

Lack of better education, especially political education among women have also deferred them from greater political participation as they are oblivious of their basic and political rights, reiterating the fact that education does play an important role.  So, despite the fact that women make up about half of our population, they are underrepresented in our political system.

A bill to reserve a third of all seats in the national and state legislatures for women has been stalled in the Indian parliament for almost three decades. A bill to reserve a third of all seats in the national and state legislatures for women has been stalled in the Indian parliament for almost three decades.

Until that happens, parties must take the initiative to increase women’s parliamentary presence and serve as an inspiration to others.

At Kerala Pravasi Association (KPA), we recognize the value of having more women comrades and constantly encourage their active participation. Together, we believe they will rightfully lead the party’s Kerala Sree project, aimed towards the empowerment of women.

Afterall, providing women with strong, leadership opportunities and making them a part of the decision making process can go a long way in achieving women’s empowerment.

Home / Blog / Inspiring women: In conversation with Aswani Nambarambath

Inspiring women: In conversation with Aswani Nambarambath

Aswani Nambarambath, Founding President National Council for Kerala Pravasi Association speaks about the Kerala Sree project and her vision for women’s empowerment .

When a group of us decided to work towards bringing change for the diaspora community and empower and utilize their  skills and growth of our country, we knew it would change the lives of women across the state of Kerala incredulously.

When we founded the Kerala Pravasi Association (KPA) in 2019 and in my role as President, the main goal was to work for the welfare and resettlement of expatriates from Kerala. Since then we have created a strong and active online community presence, of over 2.8 lakh followers, where contemporary issues are proactively discussed. Our colleagues who have relentlessly been part of this journey deserve a lot of appreciation too.

The registration of Kerala Pravasi Association (KPA) and the subsequent acceptance and support by the Election Commission and the larger diaspora community has firmly made KPA, an independent national political party.

Today, as one of the founders of the independent, national political movement called Kerala Pravasi Association and in my role, leading this movement from the helm in the capacity of National Council President, there is one thing that gives me the greatest joy – the presence and active participation of women in KPA.

The launch of our ‘Kerala Sree’ project was formulated for the empowerment of women. We plan to implement several schemes under Kerala Sree to make women more self-sufficient.

Since the party was established, we have grown in size and strength and today we are a group of enthusiastic women committed to working towards the welfare and betterment of the women across the country. There is great pride to see this number grow day by day and to see them raise their voice and come into the public arena and into leadership positions.

In our mission to provide more ‘Opportunities for women in leadership roles’ we have seen much progress. After all these are times when women entrepreneurs are continuously proving that no field of enterprise is alien or inaccessible to them.

We see more women in technology jobs today, than ten years ago. But just as important is the awareness and knowledge of the diverse professions and facilities available to them. There are many women who have not been able to bring to life their business dream.

Our objective at Kerala Sree is to create and provide them that self-employment opportunity in any business venture they wish to pursue. By being a part of KPA, they receive the encouragement, expert advice, support as well as financial assistance and investment to launch and realize their entrepreneur dreams.  Today as we go forward, we strengthen our pledge to grow in this journey and continue to work towards bringing equal opportunities to women.

To women everywhere, be confident in your abilities, and when the time comes, put those abilities to the test. Go ahead without doubting your own abilities, dismiss the obstacles and setbacks and walk towards success.

#AswaniNambarambath #womenempowerment #womenentrepreneurs

Home / Blog / SC seeks Center, EC’s response for NRI voting rights

SC seeks Center, EC’s response for NRI voting rights

The Centre and the Election Commission were asked by the Supreme Court to share their response on a PIL seeking voting rights for non-resident Indians (NRIs) in polls, against a writ petition filed by Kerala Pravasi Association (KPA) Chairman Rajendran Vellapalath and President Aswani Nambarambath.

A bench comprising Chief Justice NV Ramana, Justices JK Maheshwari and Hima Kohli heard the PIL filed by the Kerala Pravasi Association, seeking voting rights for non-residents Indians. The Section 20A of the Representation of the People Act, 1950 provides special provisions for Indian citizens residing outside India to exercise their right to vote.

The Right to vote ensures participatory and responsible democratic government that empowers the citizens to influence governmental decision-making, policy and safeguards their other human rights. However, due to an absence of corresponding provisions, this has not been enforced.

As a result, a discrimination is created between foreign voters who are able/ incapable to be physically present in the respective constituency at the time of election, and those who are unable to physically attend the constituency, leaving them deprived of the opportunity to vote. This is a violation of the constituency for a citizen’s right, under Article 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India.

Although the Central Government and the Election Commission seem to have taken several steps to implement the provision, such as setting up Parliamentary Standing Committees and introducing bills before the Lok Sabha/Rajya Sabha, no concrete decision on this has been implemented till date.

This strengthens the relevance of the reports submitted by KPA to ensure the inclusion of overseas electors. Some interpretations of Section 20A of 1950, which create unreasonable restrictions on the exercise of his right by a non-resident elector on account of his physical inability to be present at the constituency are infact in contravention of Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution.

Today’s decision by the Supreme Court to issue a notice on the writ petition is a milestone step in the implementation the rights guaranteed to citizens.

#KeralaPravasiAssociation #KPA #PravasiVote #RajendranVellapalath #AswaniNambarambath

Home / Blog / Recognizing Women’s Rights is a catalyst for change : KPA

Recognizing Women’s Rights is a catalyst for change : KPA

India’s first Lok Sabha had 23 women. But even after 60 years of Independence, there are only 59 women in the Lok Sabha. It would be a shame to say that it delivered as much as it did with all the reservations. India ranks 20th from the bottom in terms of representation of women in Parliament. This despite holding posts of president and prime minister as well as chief ministers of various states.

The problem goes beyond India. Even today, only 17 per cent of representatives in the US government are women.

India has an almost 50 per cent female population today. So, Why aren’t more women raising their voice on political opinions? Are women not environmentally conscious? Is there a lack of economic, social, historical and scientific awareness? Or do women simply dislike political matters and topics?

Good democracy can be implemented by conscious people and any women’s issue is a political issue. It should be solved politically. Unfortunately, due to tens of thousands of years of slavery and gender discrimination, women’s voices, experiences, and contributions are overlooked or undervalued, discouraging them from taking a political stand.

The Kerala Pravasi Association is working for to bring this change through their ‘Kerala Sree’ program that will tap into the potential of Indian women and bring more opportunity for economic growth and development. The program plans to implement necessary schemes to make women self-sufficient.