This just in. The Saudis are going to invest in a 20% stake at an enterprise value of $75 billion and it’s going to be India’s biggest FDI deal.
The Saudis are smart. They are rich. They know how to stay rich. And they want to get richer.
That’s why they invest in India.
Meanwhile, Pakistan, the self appointed protector of the Muslim world, is trying to make a mark by starving itself of tomatoes after cutting off trade with India.
Other counter measures announced by Pakistan to India’s move on Article 370 include : muted Eid celebrations today, watering down their own independence day celebrations on Aug 14 and observing “black day” on Aug 15. Other ideas on the table include “unsubscribing” Indians on Youtube. This is not a joke. Actually, it literally isn’t. I suspect several Indian “liberal” youtubers might lose a lot of subscribers if Pakistanis go ahead with their threat.
In the meantime, as Pakistan has cut off a trade with India and deprived itself of tomatoes, the smart Saudis have invested billions of dollars.
The message from the world is clear : nobody takes Pakistan seriously, least of all the Muslim world. The Pakistanis are at liberty to make fools of themselves.
In the last few years, we have seen a definitive change in the attitude of the world towards India. India can now pull off surgical strikes across the LoC, or even airstrikes on terrorists across the border and no nation dares object. This is partly due to the realization that Pakistan has nothing to give anybody except terrorism. The other part is due to the large and forever growing economic influence of India.
The indifference of the Muslim world would sting Pakistan that much more. Because they like to talk about being the only nuclear power in the Muslim world. And imagine how the Muslim world looks up to them for protection.
Would you believe that the Pakistani Air Force tried to intervene in the 1974 Yom Kippur War between Israel and its Arab neighbors? Neither Israel nor the Arabs even noticed their presence.
So that’s what Pakistan is. Sort of like Spiderman. You know, if Spiderman couldn’t run fast, couldn’t climb buildings nor had any other kind of superpower.
Fifty years ago, in 1969, a weak India led by Indira Gandhi had begged to join the OIC, the international organization of all nations in the Muslim world. This humiliating episode ended with India being refused entry at the insistence of Pakistan. In fact, King Faisal of Saudi Arabia, King Hussein of Jordan and the host King Hassan of Morocco jointly apologized to Pakistan for even considering having Indians around. In their apology to Pakistan, they blasted us Indians as crafty and conmen.
Now I am happy that India never joined the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC). And I am ashamed that we were humiliated and sent out, called crafty and conmen. Everything about that episode was a disaster.
What a difference fifty years have made. Among many other things, Narendra Modi has ensured that the Muslim world siding with India over Pakistan has avenged that humiliation.