FIA Hosts Farewell Reception for Vijay Shankar Prasad Visa Counselor at Indian Consulate, New York
Vijay Shankar Prasad, Visa Counsellor with the Consulate General of India in New York, was given a warm farewell by FIA to honor his exemplary service during his tenure in New York. The reception was given at Akbar Restaurant in Edison, New Jersey, and present were prominent community leaders and members of the Indian American Diaspora.
Present at the occasion were FIA Chairman Ankur Vaidya, TV ASIA Chairman H.R. Shah, Past President of FIA and Chairman of the Bihar Association Alok Kumar, FIA’s Executive Vice President Dr. Avinash Gupta, Jt. Vice President Smita Miki Patel, General Secretary Nishi Dhami, Past President and Member of the Board of Trustees Srujal Parikh, Bipin Patel, Jayesh Patel, Dipak Patel, and Kanubhai Chauhan.
Speaking at the occasion, Vaidya lauded the efforts by Vijay Shankar and his team during the COVID lockdown, when the Indian Consulate in New York was the only place in the USA where emergency visas were issued, and especially the role they played during Vande Bharat, the flagship initiative of the Government of India launched in May 2020 to repatriate Indian citizens stranded abroad due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Vijay Shankar, during the height of the pandemic, was available in person at the airport for granting visas to travelers while sacrificing and risking his safety.
Alok Kumar said it is important to acknowledge the sacrifices and risks that the NY Consulate team, including Vijay Shankar, took during the pandemic to ensure that critical services to needy travelers continued.
In the past, FIA spearheaded the selfless initiative with support from the Indian Consulate of providing complimentary consular services and traveled on most weekends with his team to all ten states that the Indian Consulate in New York covers on the East Coast to ensure that the communities there got services at their doorstep.