WASHINGTON, DC: India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi suggested to the Governor of Maryland Martin O’Malley that introducing more yoga classes into health plans may help reduce healthcare costs, when the two met at the Blair House here, last month.
O’Malley had a high level meeting with Modi, where Dr. Rajan Natarajan, Deputy Secretary of State of Maryland, Sushma Swaraj, India’s external affairs minister and Dr. S. Jaishankar, the Indian Ambassador to the United States, were also present.
O’Malley is no stranger to India, having led a large Maryland state delegation to India in 2011.
The meeting began with O’Malley noting that Indian Americans represent the highest presentage population among Asian Americans, and that Maryland has elected three individuals from Indian American community to the Maryland House of Delegates. The group also represents the largest Indian-American caucus in the U.S.
O’Malley discussed Maryland’s Online and Distance Learning program at the University of Maryland University College and Montgomery College, and was keen to have a collaboration with India. Modi mentioned that India is in the process of signing an MOU with the United States to continue to build an international educational dialogue.
They also discussed new GIS technologies used both in India and in Maryland. O’Malley praised Modi’s vision to implement more innovative GIS technologies in India to protect fisheries and monitor forestry industries. The governor also commented that Maryland has adopted some of Indian GIS technologies for accurate mapping. Both leaders explored the opportunities for co-operation in areas such as, Information Technology, cyber security, biotechnology, life sciences and aviation.
O’Malley also spoke about his vision for data-driven governance and the benefits of CityStat and StateStat initiatives for Baltimore and for the State of Maryland.
During the meeting, O’Malley also talked about his visit to India in 2011, the largest trade mission of his term as governor. Both leaders talked about investment opportunities that exist in Maryland and India. The prime minister invited O’Malley to attend two upcoming business and trade conferences, one in Indore, Madhya Pradesh and another in Gujarat.
“I’m grateful to meet Prime Minister Modi, and for the opportunity to discuss the dynamics of data-driven governing in India and in Maryland,” said O’Malley. “By forging stronger relationships overseas, we will diversify our economy to create more jobs, expand trade, and truly compete in the global arena.”
Natarajan said of the meeting: “Since 2011, we’ve built solid economic bonds with our counterparts in India, which continues to boast one of the most populous and influential economies in the world. Our efforts to better connect foreign nations to what Maryland has to offer will provide a sound foundation for a stronger future for our state.”
At the end of the meeting, O’Malley presented Modi a coffee table book on Maryland.