New overseas adviser appointed by Farron
Liberal Democrat Leader Tim Farron has this week announced the appointment of businessman Sudhir Choudhrie as his Adviser on India.
The role will involve helping the party develop its relationship with the British-Indian community and provide advice on Britain’s foreign and business relationships with India.
The role is also tasked to help the new leader gain a better understanding of the UK Indian community, its needs and concerns as part of Mr Farron's wider commitment to increasing the diversity of the party.
During the recent Lib Dem leadership election the party’s leader spoke passionately about the need for the party to reach out to Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities and for the party to become far more reflective of the communities it is seeking to serve.
Tim Farron has also committed to visit India in early 2016.
The appointment of entrepreneur Mr Choudhrie comes ahead of Prime Minister Modi’s visit to the UK between the 12th and 14th November and follows Mr Farron’s appointment of two Middle East advisers last month.
It further reinforces the Liberal Democrat leader’s stance on building relationships with Britain’s ethnic minority communities and strengthening the party’s voice in foreign affairs.
Mr Farron said: “India is a key strategic partner for the United Kingdom and the British-Indian community contribute so much to our country. I am determined that the Liberal Democrats do all we can to maximise the economic, cultural and social benefit of these relationships.
“Sudhir has been a committed supporter of the Liberal Democrats for many years and I look forward to being able to draw on his vast business experience, unparalleled network in both the UK and India, and wise political counsel.”
Mr Choudhrie, who has been one of the party’s biggest donors in recent history, said he was honoured to take up the position.
He said: “I have long believed that the Liberal Democrats best embody the internationalist and pro-enterprise values that characterise the British-Indian community and I am honoured by Tim Farron’s decision to ask me to fulfil this role, especially coinciding with Prime Minister Modi’s visit to the UK this week.
“India, with its ever vibrant and expanding consumer market of over 1.2 billion people is slated to emerge as the world's third largest economy by 2030, which makes the country extremely attractive for investment. It is critical that both India and the UK collaborate on a common agenda of growth.”