The Seychelles is an archipelago of more than 100 picturesque islands in the Indian Ocean, off the coast of East Africa, known for its beaches, coral reefs, diving, nature reserves and rare wildlife. Diplomatic ties between India and Seychelles have existed since Seychelles gained independence in 1976. Tamil immigrants arrived in Seychelles as early as 1770, and the Indians, particularly from Tamil Nadu were among the first settlers. Traders from the French colony of Pondicherry and later traders from present day Tamil Nadu, visited the islands for trade. Today, Indians are the biggest trading community in Seychelles.

Honorable Mr. Alain St.Ange, Minister of Tourism & Culture, Republic of Seychelles on his official visit to Chennai to build on strategic partnerships in travel and Medical Tourism, visited Balaji Dental and Craniofacial Hospital and Dr. S.M. Balaji. Dr. Balaji, a Cranio-Maxillo-Facial Surgeon on invitation of the Ministry of Health, Government of Seychelles, has been operating on patients with craniofacial abnormalities in Seychelles, for the past 16 years. Till date, he has performed about 2000 successful rehabilitation in Seychelles, during the once a quarter year visit to Seychelles.

During the interaction, Minister fondly remembered his strong ties with Indians and close friendship with Dr. Balaji. Honorable Mr. Alain St.Ange inaugurated the newly commissioned Craniotome. This state of art equipment can precisely cut the skull and exactly stop when the bone is cut and brain is reached. With the help of this equipment, the duration and cost of complex craniofacial surgery is reduced.

Speaking to the Press and Media, he spoke on building bilateral ties and how advances in medical sciences and technologies cross boundaries. Applauding the expertise of Dr. Balaji he called for greater role from all stakeholders to better serve the society while building on strategic partnerships.