Above is the Facebook post of Kozhikode-based Malabar Gold & Diamond celebrating Pakistan Independence Day 2016 through a quiz competition. A competition which the company said was, meant for its customers in the West Asia. The post was removed later.
Ahammed MP is the Chairman of the Malabar Group of Companies.
A press release from the company said that "As part of the marketing initiatives in countries operating outside India, activities and events are organised to show fraternity and solidarity to foreign customers. These include activations for national days of various countries in GCC, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, etc".
The company doesn't have a store in Pakistan as per their website as on 20 August 2016. (http://www.malabargoldanddiamonds.com/stores).
So definitely company was looking at Pakistanis in GCC as potential customer.
The Indian expatriate population in the region stood at 4.9 million, while that of Pakistanis was at two million, by 2010 end. (http://www.bq-magazine.com/economy/2013/08/indians-pakistanis-send-highest-amount-remittances-abroad-gcc)
And the number of Indians in GCC will be much higher than Pakistanis even today.
Indians have far more surplus money than Pakistanis. As per Khaleej Times report "In Saudi Arabia, Indians headed the table with around 2.8 million workers sending $10.836 billion, while Egyptians came in second with $7.573 billion. Pakistanis were third with $4.489 billion, followed by Bangladeshis with $3.785 billion," ( http://www.khaleejtimes.com/business/gold-forex/remittances-from-gcc-to-india-hit-72b)
||Governments of GCC are not happy with Pakistan. It was made clear by a Kuwaiti daily when it said "The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries do not need Pakistan. In fact, Pakistan needs them in various areas," the editor-in-chief of the paper Ahmad al Jarallah wrote." (http://tribune.com.pk/story/869184/gulf-countries-do-not-need-pakistan-pakistan-needs-them-kuwaiti-daily/)
Malabar Gold doesn't have a branch in Pakistan and in India it operates in 10 states.
Pakistanis are not only less in number in GCC but also earn far less than Indians.
GCC is not happy with Pakistan. GCC and India relationship is at all time high.
Pakistan's Independence day is on 14th August and Indian Independence day on 15th August.
By any marketing strategy, it would have been ideal for Malabar Gold to celebrate India's Independence Day.
The argument put forward by Malabar Gold through its Press Release doesn't hold much water. The press release is devoid of truth.
Loyalty to Pakistan by companies in India is a very recent phenomenon, visible from 2015. I will site two more examples.
On 2nd January 2016, Pakistan trained terrorist attacked Pathankot airbase. The operation lasted till 5th January 2016. India lost 6 soldiers. On 6th January 2016, Times of India had a full front page advertisement by Roche featuring Wasim Akram. (It was like rubbing salt on wounds of Indians).
One must understand that the whole process which would have made the advertisement appear on 6th January would have taken place before 6th of January i.e when the Pathankot attack by Pakistan trained terrorist was on and India was losing its soldiers.
Moving to second example. During Ramazan of 2015 (July), Western Union was running a radio jingle wishing everyone Happy Ramadan, instead of Happy Ramazan.
The difference between the two was noted by Zehra Kazmi (1 July 2015), "Why I Choose to Call it 'Ramzan' and not 'Ramadaan'." He observed: "If we turn the pages of history, we can see how language has led to wars. It remains one of the most potent tools of influence in the world that shapes our society in myriad ways..Most Indians of the subcontinent have started preferring the Arabic Ramadaan over the usual Urdu/Farsi Ramzan. Mubarak has become Mabrouk or Kareem. A huge criticism of this debate has been that it is unnecessary, but I think that is a very shallow view of the entire issue. The words we choose to describe ourselves or our situation are of utmost importance. They reflect in which context we choose to place ourselves..every time Urdu speaking Muslims decide to exchange Urdu words for Arabic, we buy into the Salafi/Wahabi discourse."
Interestingly, most companies in Pakistan-both local and MNCs-run Happy Ramzan advertisements and not Happy Ramadan. (http://indiafacts.org/ramazan-taking-corporate-route-ramadan/)
Looking in the background of above points, the stance of Western Union was truly perplexing.
I can be accused of scaremongering. But when one looks at the following facts:
>> Significant numbers of Indian Politicians are in the grip of Pakistan.
>> India has lost control of its movies, especially Hindi movies to Pakistan.
>> India has lost control of its elite and media to Pakistan.
Then it is natural to think that India is now on the verge of losing control of its business community to Pakistan.
It's time the concerned departments of Government of India took corrective measures before it is too late.
Sandeep Singh, founder www.swastik.net.in