One of the highlights of Prime Minister Modi three-nation trip to Palestine, Oman and UAE will be an address to the Indian expatriates in Oman. The mega community program organized by the Indian Embassy at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex is expected to draw a massive crowd. Indian media headlines have already informed us that “PM Narendra Modi to address record crowd of NRIs in Muscat on February 11.”
With Indians making up almost 20 percent of Oman’s population, one wouldn’t expect the attendance to such an event to be a problem. But it looks like the Indian Embassy is taking no chances. Apart from open online registration for the event via its website, the Embassy has issued appeals to large companies employing Indians to “spare their employees” for half a day to participate in the event.
In a letter addressed to companies employing a large Indian workforce, the Indian Embassy has specified the number of people they expect the company to send. This is not all. There is a further request that 80 percent of the number must be blue-collared workers. Optics are important and it seems that the audience composition has been carefully planned.
Companies have also been requested to arrange group transport for their workers to attend the event. How else would the blue-collared workers make it to the venue? Arrangements have been made to bring them in by bus loads. They get half a day off and the Embassy gets a captive audience to listen to the Prime Minister. It’s a win-win for all.
“The Embassy of India in Muscat has always been rendering full cooperation to your company and I request and hope to receive your full cooperation in arranging participation of your employees in the above Community Event” reads the letter from the Indian Ambassador in Oman. We are sure this little nudge for “cooperation” will go a long way in ensuring that a record crowd turns up to listen to the Prime Minister.
Alt News was sent a copy of the letter by the employee of a company in Oman. Alt News verified the contents with other Muscat based Indians who confirmed that their companies also got similar letters.
Additionally Indian schools in Muscat have made arrangements to transport students from grade 6-12 to the event.
Messages were also sent to parents over WhatsApp informing them about the said event.
The stadium can seat 34,000 people and looking at these event management efforts of the Embassy, we will be surprised at anything less than a full-house.
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