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PostPosted: 04 Jun 2016 08:44 
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We see that Middle East is in turmoil with civil wars, oil price downturn and other calamities chronicled in many threads. So potentially Indians could be evacuated enmasse. Its useful to examine issues that could result;
- Size of Indian origin population in different countries.
- Evacuation plans by country
- Rehabilitation of the evacuees and reabsorbing them say to support Make in India.
- What skills and retraining needed?
etc.


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PostPosted: 04 Jun 2016 11:10 
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using brookings as source

http://www.brookings.edu/blogs/markaz/posts/2016/04/01-india-modi-visits-saudi-arabia-madan

NRI Population in ME

Saudi Arabia - 2,800,000
UAE - 2,000,000
Kuwait - 760,000
Oman - 700,000
Qatar - 600,000
Bahrain - 350,000
Iraq - 15,000

Total Population - 7.225 Million.

Total remittance - $36 Billion

Exports from India - $ 55 billion


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PostPosted: 04 Jun 2016 16:54 
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Modis photo op with Saudi wimmens was significant - not just because it was the first male world leader shown moving around with women in Saudi - it gives a glimpse of what an Indian entity has done in Saudi to build up a post-oil economy. I think it was a bunch of Infosisters working for Infosys. I doubt if those desert kingdoms will want to rely on making hourglasses and egg timers from all that sand after oil runs dry. They will need to build their economy and that economy would be best placed if it was complementary to nearby India - producing stuff that can be used in India and importing stuff from India. Tourism and sport would be other things and with all that land - maybe there can be expatriate cities for Indians with all the extra people? Amusement parks, movie making wonderlands, exotic wedding venues, parks for the safe disposal of e waste and export of rare metals from e waste, marine parks, water sports for desis looking for amusement are future possibilities

A dream I have would be those desert Kingdoms managing with less - buying an Indian plane for 50 million rather than a western sourced one for 500 million. Mining for things other than oil, farming, desalination of water for farming could all offer opportunities for cooperation. When we need large areas of uninhabited land for testing stuff (say earthmovers), launching rockets or landing them or observatories, those gulf states which have been given nothing other than dollars so far, may be an opportunity for Indian to take. From Mumbai a flight to the gulf takes less time than a flight to Kolkata or Guwahati - so there is some scope for cooperation and building things there using Indian skills


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PostPosted: 04 Jun 2016 22:20 
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The first thing gulf workers do is buy up random properties across india. A mass return will spike up the real estate.

I don't think states like kerala and south karnataka can handle the political consequences arising from mass diaspora returns.


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 02:28 
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Saar's

This thread should (IMO) expand to include diaspora in the Anglo-Saxon west too. West Asia is in turmoil, but then so is Anglo-Saxon west.

The difference between the profiles of Indians from west Asia and Anglo-Saxon west is substantial, but then so is their willingness to accept Maslows hierarchy. Somehow being less educated permits those immigrants from lower socio economic status to accept they need to start at the bottom of the Maslow's hierarchy. While the more educated one is, the achievement in their personal lives overseas, prevents them from being flexible and facing up to the rapid changes as they happen around them. Thus making them unwilling to accept the need to restart their lives at the bottom of the pyramid.

This is of course my opinion.


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 06:39 
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Abhay_S and nvishal thanks. Exactly what I had in mind.

So any breakdown of the $55B exports?

nvishal Expatriates might not be able to get money out. So they need hedge and move it out slowly.


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 06:43 
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a) recently talking to a Paki in Dubai..says atleast u indians can go back to ur country and start again..where do we go?

b) the short term and long term prospects in ME going down the hill... only bright spot is some event ( i forget event name..some world... in 2020 on which lot of dubai folks are banking on. we will sell our properties in 2020 when the event happens..wonders how many will be left to buy properties when all are wanting to sell?? one very wise man in dubai tells me ME will be awful place by 2050 for many reasons.


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 06:51 
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Why not take action that will help keep Indians working in the gulf on non-oil economy projects? That is the way forward.


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 09:53 
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From RamaY who inspired this thread.

Quote:
India's opportunities and challenges emanating from Gulf-collapse & resulting expat tsunami (impact in foreign remittances, socio-economic SWOT)


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 10:06 
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Crude Oil is back @ $45-50...many say headed to $60 by year end.

The whole premise of this thread is somewhat baseless right now


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 11:04 
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ramana wrote:
From RamaY who inspired this thread.

Quote:
India's opportunities and challenges emanating from Gulf-collapse & resulting expat tsunami (impact in foreign remittances, socio-economic SWOT)

Wasn't RamaY banned permanently for making persistently insulting comments about the Armed Forces after multiple earlier bans?


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 11:13 
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I do strongly support the need for a thread on the Indian Diaspora though...in many ways the Diaspora is going to be India's secret sauce over the next century and beyond.


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 12:11 
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ramana wrote:
Abhay_S and nvishal thanks. Exactly what I had in mind.

So any breakdown of the $55B exports?

nvishal Expatriates might not be able to get money out. So they need hedge and move it out slowly.



Indias biggest Trade partner in ME is UAE. breakdown of $55 Bn exports is

UAE - 33 Bn
SA - 8 Bn
Iran - 4.2 Bn
Oman - 3.1 Bn

according to http://trademap.org/ India,s biggest Trade partner in ME is UAE. Almost 12 bn export is Gems and Jewellery

@Arjun Oil price does seem to be headed up but the biggest risk in the region remains the spread of Turmoil. it will be interesting to watch Dubai as it may benefit from this turmoil. More rich Arabs will look at it as a safe Haven and Islamic finance practices mean that real estate will be Hot. I think the percentage of white collar NRIs in higher in UAE.


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PostPosted: 05 Jun 2016 12:30 
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I will give a 15% chance of any serious turmoil spreading beyond the Levant....Main risk was the oil price which now looks to be postponed.


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PostPosted: 06 Jun 2016 00:11 
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India's biggest obstacle to sensible precautions is India's financial institutions - and the byzantine maze of stupid regulations that still obstruct and keep increasing obstruction of ****law-abiding**** investment by NRIs and OCIs. The banks and mutual fund institutions are run by sh1ts, enough said. Otherwise they could offer an obvious haven for funds of people who I am sure have very strong concerns. At the institution level, funds could be transferred out in a jiffy by using third-party centers, or barter of resources (transfer our resources out, or we will simply confiscate yours).

The funds transfer issue should be made independent of the people transfer issue, then people won't need to try hedging by buying gold and otherwise making themselves needlessly vulnerable.

India needs a massive overhaul of financial regulations, as well as the Customs rules. Plus a huge cleanup of the financial companies.


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PostPosted: 06 Jun 2016 16:42 
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This might be a little OT but IMO its in our interests to have the entire Middle East go back to choping each other's heads and f*cking camels. And we should be doing everything in our power to precipitate the situation.


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PostPosted: 06 Jun 2016 19:49 
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^ While I have to emphatize with your kind advice, it WOULD be bissing on ourselves...
From time immemorial West Coast of India has been trading with Middle East - I saw recently that at Mohenjodaro Captain M's Seafood Heaven, they had a large mural of a ***SAILING*** ship.
So if the pleasant mutual IEDology and burnings of wimmens etc were to continue and spread on a grand scale, would the original civilizations return? Such as Yazidis, Phoenicians, Philistines, etc?

Ooops! Trouble is that THOSE are the people being burned or otherwise tortured to death. This is the problem. The RESET button takes them straight, not to BCE5000 but only to AD800.

This is the problem. If one gives Kurds, Alawites Yazidis and Hittites nukes and chemical weapons and asks them to take out their enemies with the full blessing of the UNSC, G8 and Group of 77, will they promise to hit RESET beyond AD800? If so, they can all go back to pleasant and civilized practices such as crucifixion and boiling in oil.


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PostPosted: 06 Jun 2016 21:01 
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i should have asked for discussions and no rants.

Arjun its serious issue.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 02:28 
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Sorry if misunderstood, but I am not ranting, I am pointing to one of the main problems in orderly preparation. Most ME nations have restrictions on lawful repatriation of money by "imported" workers. This is probably the main obstacle to their ability to prepare for a swift exit. The Indian government response to this issue is to empower its baboon to rip off the NRIs with all sorts of archaic Customs and Investment rules. If these were intelligently straightened out, NRIs would set up at least a 50-50 split between their holdings where they live, and in India.
Desperate people are forced to do many other strategies - like putting their money in Caymans or places like that. Then if say someone dies in an accident, these banks/institutions simply swallow the money (happened to someone I know).
Or looking to hawala or gold smuggling.
Indian mutual fund rules are extremely backward, and presume that all their customers are thieves - like their officials.

GOI needs to take forward-looking steps to ensure that NRIs in Gelf, KSA etc have good ways to protect their assets. Then it's a matter of grabbing the kids and cats and running for the border, not worried about staying a bit longer to protect lifetime savings etc.

If you remember the horrors of Iraq 1990-91 you know what I mean. Same scenario played over and over again so many times - Fiji, Uganda ....

Without such preparation to protect one's own people and their assets, what is the point of making grand strategic plans for economic this and that? The basic step needed is to give one's own people the security of knowing that their assets are safe, and they have a home to come back to without a whole pack of hyenas waiting to tear them apart once they land in the matrubhoomi.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 05:34 
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UB not you. What you are suggesting is an investment vehicle for Gulf NRIs. It could be for all NRIs via legitimate govt bonds and mutual funds. It could be special vehicle to fund #MII and win-win for everyone.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 06:32 
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I have some questions about the premise of the thread - that seems to me to be
1. Oil rich Arab states are heading towards collapse and chaos
2. This will lead to an exodus of expatriate workers - many millions of whom are Indians
3. How should we prepare for those people's return

Without having any discussion about points 1 and 2 - this thread appears to take point 3 for granted and says "Let's discuss this"

I see so many holes in this that I will be a thread destroyer if I start pointing them out. But without looking at which states will fail and why they will fail, and which states will cope, how they will cope and looking at what Gulf States might already be doing to prepare for the future - simply talking about a unilateral internal Indian reaction to undefined external events is, to my mind, pointless.

I recall starting a thread about "failure of the US" on the burqa forum simply to ask what a failing US might look like. No attention was paid in that thread to what might happen to Indians as the US fails. Of course that thread could be described as fantasy, not requiring attention. But then why is this thread not fantasy and therefore requiring attention? Some information on why this thread is not fantasy would be a good idea before discussing one consequence of that failure event - which is the return of Indian expatriates.

In fact I could point out that resettling Indians who might have to be evacuated from the US will be more difficult because they are used to stuff that they will never get in India and will find life hard without the wealthy freedoms that the US allows them. Resettling Gulf returnees will likely be easier because they are more in tune with hardships and will see India as more free and most are probably used to more "eastern" restrictions


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 12:26 
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We should have a programme where NRIs can safely park their money in India and Indian assets. Not from the purpose of giving assured returns but giving them assured safety and sapne thing to bank upon of someday west become pislamic or a Uganda, Fiji happens. There is already turmoil in African countries against India and in the face of increasing nationalism Indians will always be the softest, richest and the first target. Same will start in UK and US when Islam and race mixing mongrels will start chaos in western world in the coming decades. Some day if they intend to return to India someday after making money or any untoward situation forces them to return, they can always bank upon these safe investments. It could be a huge source of permanent flow of capital in India.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 12:27 
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I only saw comments and posts about the oil prices fluctuations and that being a cause of mass exodus from the Gelf. Has some one also thought about the Nitaquaat (and its versions in other Sheikdoms). Saudi Arabia is making lots of professions/businesses to be only for Saudi population. The mobile phone business was the last one which got Saudi-ised. The people leaving the ME may also be due to such new laws and regulations.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 13:46 
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UlanBatori wrote:
^ While I have to emphatize with your kind advice, it WOULD be bissing on ourselves...
From time immemorial West Coast of India has been trading with Middle East - I saw recently that at Mohenjodaro Captain M's Seafood Heaven, they had a large mural of a ***SAILING*** ship.
...


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 17:04 
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Not sure if anyone in the discussion so far has actually engaged in the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) Countries - where at least $44 bn of the $55 bn in exports goes to. There are, as far as I know, no major impediments to sending cash out. Otherwise, few Indians will live there. Numerous Indian banks have branches in virtually every state there, and then there are the transfer agencies like Western Union and others, and finally there is also hawala... I venture to suggest that the bulk of the remittances into India come from the GCC. It is a mutually beneficial and important relationship, money wise, and increasingly from strategic point of view...


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 17:18 
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If chaos happens in any one or more of these countries, there is a sort of "template" now, given that it did happen in 1991 with the Iraqi invasion and airlift from Kuwait. Other than that, not much can be expected when they return home. If they have some personal funds for investing and starting out, great, other wise, it will be exactly as when they left. No special help will be given, I expect, except perhaps free trips home organised by MEA.

They will of course come back with a lot expertise and experience, which can help up the quality of some of our service sectors, as well as the real estate and property development sectors.. construction and support industries and so on...

Having said that, I'm not anticipating any major tumult in the key countries (UAE/Kuwait/Oman/Qatar); Saudi Arabia is iffy, but still not beyond recovery. Bahrain is a useful and reasonably friendly bit player. The US will not allow, in a couple of these countries, for tumult to go beyond a point - especially if outside forces are involved; and we will be working separately but closely, and militarily with the Americans. But like I said, with Iran now in reasonably predictable mode, no real cause for concern for the foreseeable future from all (except Saudi, and that is both internal and external). They need to get their act together quickly.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 18:57 
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^^
I would add that 99% of Indians living in the GCC remit funds as soon as they receive their salaries/wages. As JEM pointed out there are no restrictions to remittances out. To put things in perspective, out of merchandise Indian exports of ~$325 billion the GCC is $55 billion. Similarly if one compares service exports of ~$150 billion, GCC remittances of $55 billion are about 33% of service exports, to which they most closely approximate. The number of Indian nationals who have invested in property in the GCC countries that allow such purchases i.e. UAE can probably be numbered in the thousands only. And such people, mainly businessmen are rich enough to take care of themselves. From an Indian perspective, what is important is stability in the GCC, because that is what translates into jobs. Witness the destruction of the expat job markets in countries overtaken by revolutions/wars from Iran in 1979 to Iraq in 1992 to Libya subsequently. Hundreds of thousands of expat Indians lost their jobs for good in those countries.

For the GCC, Saudi Arabia is the linchpin. If the Saudi Royal family is overthrown, the GCC is toast. Bahrain will fall the same day, Kuwait will be de-stabilised soon thereafter. UAE may last out a bit longer. For the most influential player for the region, the US, has already hedged it's bets by the opening to Iran. Canary in a coal mine? What the stories of Iran, Iraq and Libya tell us is that under any kind of regime the oil will continue to flow out. The expat job market however will be destroyed.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 19:24 
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>>If the Saudi Royal family is overthrown, the GCC is toast.

I doubt it ldev. Oman/UAE will be resilient and properly protected (by a number of countries, including us). Qatar/Kuwait, less so, but I expect it them to survive broadly intact (in terms of rulership structure - if not actual figures - and again protected by several countries including us); Bahrain may be toast, but there too I'm doubtful except that it will take more of a body blow than the others.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 19:45 
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^^
JEM, you are more optimistic than me. IMO, proper external protection will require large scale boots on ground for which the west has no appetite. Does India? It is also a question of confidence. Without stability in the largest economy whose GDP is more than the combined GDP of the rest, what will the economies of the rest including jobs markets look like even if the regimes survive. Also, in the event of problems in Saudi, the Iranians will do everything utilizing their Shia fifth columns in every country to destabalize i.e. even Saudi and Kuwait have a 20% Shia population. Anyway, I regard this as a low probability event, notwithstanding recent developments.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 19:53 
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The long term goal should be moving more Indians out of India. The Indian diaspora in the middle east ought to have a 'homeland' IN middle east. It is easier said than done.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 21:26 
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The tendency of any organism is to return to its origins. This would be their village or town where they initially migrated from. Then they move out elsewhere in search of employment.

GOI can Create a frame work where the people are settled in accordance with the wishes of GOI. For eg. resettle Indian passport holding Hindus in Kashmir in enclaves with incentives like tax free period for 5 years, special grants to start up businesses. Those married to non Indian nationals need to be handled differently. This COULD eliminate the demographic issue in Kashmir.

The overwhelming number of nationals in west asia are from the islamic community. They would naturally gravitate towards their villages in Kerala/WB, but would branch out. They will bring their toxic influences imbibed in places like Saudi. How can you control that?

Some returning folks will be asset rich but cash poor. Many will sell assets to raise cash which itself will bring about its own problems or will use hawala transactions to access funds parked in West Asia.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 21:31 
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JE Menon wrote:
Having said that, I'm not anticipating any major tumult in the key countries (UAE/Kuwait/Oman/Qatar); Saudi Arabia is iffy, but still not beyond recovery. Bahrain is a useful and reasonably friendly bit player. The US will not allow, in a couple of these countries, for tumult to go beyond a point - especially if outside forces are involved; and we will be working separately but closely, and militarily with the Americans. But like I said, with Iran now in reasonably predictable mode, no real cause for concern for the foreseeable future from all (except Saudi, and that is both internal and external). They need to get their act together quickly.


You assume US can control the outcome of this fall out. They are themselves in deepest of poop. I do not think they have the knowledge or the ability to control the event outcome.


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PostPosted: 07 Jun 2016 23:21 
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I don't assume just the US. But first it would be useful to list those who would attack the UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain... Iran?

Also, it is important to note that the total local population of these countries is about 10m, about that of Delhi.


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PostPosted: 08 Jun 2016 08:15 
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shiv wrote:
In fact I could point out that resettling Indians who might have to be evacuated from the US will be more difficult because they are used to stuff that they will never get in India and will find life hard without the wealthy freedoms that the US allows them.


More likely outcome is resettlement in Canada. Canada has been welcoming of refugees from USA since the revolutionary war.


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PostPosted: 08 Jun 2016 08:38 
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I dispute the idea that people will simply rise up in revolt a nation and upset their own applecart.

It is not as if this cannot happen - it happens all too often. But it happens when internal dissent in a country is encouraged and funded and grups armed. It is, to my mind - a sort of European view of the "rest of the world" where it is expected that barbarian and barely civilized people will simply go wild. Indians are suspected to be like that by the west - but only Indians who subconsciously see ourselves as European in mindset do not agree

Let me briefly list a few recent "upheavals".

In pre-1947 India - the first blow was struck by the British in the division of Bengal on Muslim-non Muslim lines. That was later reversed, but the Muslim - non Muslim divide was kept simmering leading to the massacres of direct action day, partition and later the 1971 Bangladesh massacres

In Vietnam and Cambodia - political factions were actively funded by the US to encourage civil war. This happened in South America as well.

Afghanistan was essentially a proxy war between communists and the US + Islamists on the one side and later Pakistan versus the US

Iraq was relatively stable - and it took two wars to destabilize it completely.

Middle eastern sheikhdoms will not collapse into chaos without plenty of external goading.

India has a choice. Either we can help stabilize the sheikhdoms or stand back and watch as they are destabilized (by whom?) Who is going to destabilize those kingdoms? Who is interested in chaos? That destabilization has to occur before there is a mass exodus.


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PostPosted: 08 Jun 2016 22:36 
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All above formulations are fit topics for geopolitics and other threads. This thread is about discussing what's to be done if there is massive repatriation from Middle East.

Shiv's approach of stabilizing Middle East in another option but more in WANA thread.


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PostPosted: 08 Jun 2016 23:17 
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It would be a good thing to find out how many desis there are, broken down by country. Dstribution by wealth/profession/type of employment would be a logical next step, though more difficult. If the total population is ~10M, can there be more than, say, 1M Indians? There are about 1 to 3M desis/desi-origin Americans in the US.

What about African countries? I think danger of destabilization is today even greater in Africa than in ME (which is the source of a lot of the destabilization). Egypt, Morocco, Algeria, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania are all in grave danger. West Africa has been pretty-much unstable for a long time.


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PostPosted: 08 Jun 2016 23:46 
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There is an initiative about Africa and GOI plans to have deep roots.

ME is mess as there is religion involved.


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PostPosted: 09 Jun 2016 05:33 
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Africa is targeted by a lot of folks. Massive conversion schemes by the American MNC (MultiNational Conversionists) and the ISIS/KSA. Plus PLA has a firm foothold for many decades in Tanzania etc. Plus Oiropean colonists want to re-enter as Climate Savers.

GOI is a poor 67th in line, which is the problem. Desis are far better grassroots bijnejppl and professionals than all these. Pogroms against desis are highly likely in Africa with all these goon gangs whipping up yahoos - or launching outright genocidal attacks.


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PostPosted: 09 Jun 2016 07:00 
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This thread reminds me of my past. We had to leave middle east during GW1 as the war was about to break out. I was very young then but I vaguely remember seeing gas masks, food and juice stocked up and windows covered by plastic sheets to prevent gas from entering.

I am not sure how I can contribute but here are my 2 cents:

1) Most folks who travel to gulf are lower middle class by indian standards. They would not have passports on them to evacuate pre-emptively at the beginning of hostilities.

2) In most gulf countries afaik, you can not own property as a non-citizen. Most banks have no interest rates either. So there is no option other than to remit it back to India. Hence no money to buy plane tickets either at a short notice.

3) Indian folks tend to support those in power. As a result, a shia uprising is bad for ordinary Indians living in the gulf. This is because in the past most Indian folks ( somewhat foolishly ) have tended to support gulf monarchies though the right choice would have been to remain independent.

4) In some places like Dubai, expatriate population outnumbers local population. So it makes sense to stake claim to some of the assets.

Having grown up in the gulf, I believe that all that glows/glitters in the gulf has mostly been built by Indians( and pakis to an extent ). It is not wise to let go of one's investments so easily.


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