Curtain Raiser Event of Indo-German Young Leaders Forum 2017

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With 14000 Indian students pursuing studies in Germany and about 1000 German students enrolled in Indian Universities ,a need for better dialogue and exchange between the two countries to strengthen these educational and economic ties was felt.The seed for the inception of a forum germinated thus .

After a lot of efforts and brainstorming ,on 12th December 2016 The  Indo-German Young Leaders Forum held its inauguration event at the Embassy of India in Berlin.

The Indo-German Young Leaders Forum is a private, politically independent, non-profit, non-partisan initiative driven by a diverse committee of volunteers.The Indo-German Young Leaders Forum is an initiative to foster existing and new Indo-German relations in the field of business, politics, science, media and culture. I.G.Y.L.F. is a bridge, which reduces the cultural, economical, social and political distance between New Delhi and Berlin and is officially endorsed by the German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.


On the 30th May 2017,at the fourth Inter-Governmental Consultations  between India and Germany Prime Minister of India Mr. Narendra Modi and the German Federal Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel called for a process by which concrete synergies in areas such as capacity building, vocational training, connectivity and renewable energy would be set up.

It makes sense, since Germany is India’s largest trading partner in Europe and 7th largest source of FDI .Germany with its high quality products, high engineering qualities and training systems can help propel Indian initiatives like Digital India, Startup India and Make in India that also rely heavily on technology and innovation.

Within a few weeks of that,the then Indian Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman and Germany’s Economic Affairs Minister Ms. Brigitte Zypries declared that the two countries had agreed to establish exchange programmes for Indian and German Startups.

I attended the curtain raiser to the actual event to be held later next year.The curtain raiser event was held on the 27th of September  at the German Embassy in New Delhi.

Mr. Volmar Noeske – the MC for the evening 

His Excellency Dr. Martin Ney 
Mr. Volkmar Noeske was the charming and suave MC for the evening . He started with a brief introduction of the IGYLF and then invited the German Ambassador to India, His Excellency Dr.Martin Ney ( also the co-founder jointly with leading Indian industrialists of the “Alliance of dual Vocational Education and Training”) for the inaugural address which was received with much positivity and excitement .

It was then followed by a brief history of the conception of the forum by Mr. Vishnu Ramdeo ,the Co-Chairman of the Executive Committee of the IGYLF .

Co- Chairman of the Executive Committee,IGYLF – Mr. Vishnu Ramdeo

Mr. Ramdeo is the founder and Director of the Ramdeo College of Management and Science. He is further the founder of the Cultural Bridge Programme. He is also the recipient of the prestigious German Chancellor’s Fellowship, and has worked extensively on improving higher educational systems by fostering collaborations between institutions of India and the EU.

After that Dr. Florian Ramel ,Member of the Executive Committee ,took to the podium and gave an informal introduction the forum, its work and expressed sincere hopes of a positive outcome from this association in the coming years .Dr. Florian has served as a commissioned officer in the German Army for ten years and now works for the management of a small holding company in Berlin .

It was then followed by a scintillating and stimulating panel discussion on the ” Vocational Education Training (VET) and Skills development landscape in India “.

Among the esteemed panel of judges were – Mr. Johannes Strittmatter (Project Director) Indo-German Program for Vocational Education and Training), GIZ, Mr.  Manish Joshi (Deputy Head ) India International Skill Centres, NSDC, Mr. Maheshwar Peri (Publisher) Careers360 magazine and Mr V. Suresh (Head of  Skill Development and CSR ), Tata Motors.

The panel discussion in progress

The discussion brought out the strong need for Work based learning and apprenticeship and standardization of the training in India as per International standards .This is an  area where we can certainly learn a lot from German VET where Private sector companies have their own educational institutions that provide standardized education ,training and also encourage the students to innovate resulting in a high percentage of employment of these highly skilled students .

The evening ended with networking over dinner and drinks and high hopes for Indo-German future collaborations .

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