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IAFPE Forum On Outsourcing Invites Active Participation

Nirmala Garimella

The Indian American Forum for Political Education, New England Chapter kicked off its inaugural event of a series of debates with the topic that has enveloped this nation – Outsourcing: Addressing the social, emotional and political Impact on Americans on April 24th at the MIT. The event featured the first dialogue of its kind in the Boston-area where a cross-section of individuals from academia, media, business and government assembled to discuss outsourcing/off-shore development and its implications for individuals, as Indians and as Americans.

IAPFE Chairwomen, Pooja Shukla, Aparna Upadhyay and Madhuri Ravi spoke on the Internship Flagship Program and recognized the college interns selected this year. Dick Gordon, renowned radio talk show host and host of National Public Radio (NPR) moderated the afternoon’s discussion. Rohit Khanna, Candidate for US Congress from California delivered the Keynote address.

Panelists present in the meeting addressed the issue at hand and besides expressing their comments on the Outsourcing issue, suggested a number of follow up action points. Those who spoke on the subject included Paul Almeida, President, Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO, David L. Andre, CTO, Upromise, Ian Fletcher, Vice President of Government relations, American Engineering Association, Amar Gupta, Professor, MIT Sloan School of Management, Max Michaels, Managing Director, CRYZTAL Capital, Dr Lakshmi Srinivas, Professor of Sociology, Wellesley College, Sona Shah, IT Programmer and NY Supreme Court Petitioner.

All the speakers present were very impressive and offered original thought on the subjects. The topic was debated with relevance and included issues like a cogent defense of protectionism, Free trade, cry for public policy changes, Morality and Ethics, connection between visas and outsourcing, the difference in Offshoring and Outsourcing, the cultural impact of this new phenomena and the challenge to increase productivity.

The forum then conducted a question and answer session that had a round up of the day’s discussion from panel discussants. Veena Manchanda, an attendee gave her comments” “I am contracting and have a job but feel that there should be a labor law that the company should have to inform the employees that we are going to outsource or have layoffs few months in advance”. Another attendee said,” I had mixed feelings on this issue when I came here but after listening I am convinced that the advantages far outweigh its disadvantages”. The day also witnessed a visible protest by a participant who staged a walk out after shredding some of the data handed out at the forum.

Ramesh Advani, Norfolk Town Selectman, proposed a vote of thanks. The event was supported by ten prominent Massachusetts-based South Asian business.

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IAFPE Chairwomen - Madhuri Ravi, Aparna Upadhyay and Pooja Shukla

Dick Gordon



Rohit Khanna


Ramesh Advani

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