Of George Bush, Bill Clinton, Former Miss Turkey and the Nizam of Hyderabad
What is common between Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, the Nizam (a former Prince) and a former Miss Turkey and pearls? Their association with the world’s happening hi-tech city of Hyderabad, in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh (the fifth largest state in the country).
After New Delhi, Hyderabad is the only city in India to attract two US Presidents. About their visits later. First about the breaking story that concerns the Nizam and a former Miss Turkey, who was once his wife.
Manolya Onur, a former Miss Turkey, has won a maintenance and compensation package worth millions of rupees from her former husband, an Indian prince whose grandfather, the last ruling Nizam of Hyderabad, was once hailed as the richest man in the world, says The Guardian.
The Nizam (princely) dynasty ruled the kingdom of Hyderabad in south India for more than 200 years until the British left the country in 1947. The spotlight turned on Hyderabad when the then Nizam refused to allow his state to accede to the Indian Republic…and troops had to be dispatched by New Delhi to “persuade” the Nizam!
After a protracted legal battle an Indian judge yesterday ordered the Nizam of Hyderabad, Mukarram Jah, 73, who lives with his fifth wife in Turkey, to pay his divorced third wife Manolya Onur maintenance, house rent and mehr (Islamic divorce compensation) amounting to about 150m rupees (Â£1.8m).
The judge also banned the prince from selling any of his palaces in Hyderabad, now a hub for India’s infotech revolution, until he had paid up.
The Nizam’s grandfather Osman Ali Khan was the only Maharaja (King)in British India who was accorded the title His Exalted Highness, a reward for contributing Â£25m to the British exchequer during the first world war.
Nizam VII Mir Osman Ali Khan was one of the richest men in the world during the 1940s. He is seen with his daughter-in-law, Princesss Nilofer, who was considered one of the most beautiful women in the world.
The old princely city of Hyderabad is now a hi-tech city, another home to Oracle, Google, Wipro, Microsoft, Accenture, IBM, Fusion Technologies, General Electric and what have you…and promising to accommodate many more. And hence it is turning into a magnate for the US Presidents.
Early this year Mr. Bush visited Hyderabad where he met with Indian entrepreneurs, toured an agricultural university and inspected a water buffalo. President Bush’s theme was that the United States should welcome rather than fear competition from India.
“People do lose jobs as a result of globalization, and it’s painful for those who lose jobs,” Mr. Bush said at meeting with young entrepreneurs at Hyderabad’s Indian School of Business, one of the premier schools of its kind in India. Nonetheless, the president said, “globalization provides great opportunities.”
Mr. Bush strongly defended the outsourcing of American jobs to India as the reality of a global economy, and said that the United States should instead focus on India as a vital new market for American goods. Hyderabad is a center of India’s booming high-tech industry, and was also on Mr. Clinton’s itinerary when he visited India in 2000.
“The classic opportunity for our American farmers and entrepreneurs and small businesses to understand is, there is a 300 million-person market of middle-class citizens here in India, and that if we can make a product they want, that it becomes viable,” Mr. Bush said at the business school.
At an earlier stop at Hyderabad’s Acharya N.G. Ranga Agricultural University, Mr. Bush watched Indian women in saris hand-till the soil around tomatoes, peanuts and soybeans. One of the women gave Mr. Bush a thumbs-up sign as he walked past. The president also viewed water buffalo and some Indian handcrafts.
“One of his oft-quoted statements in Indian media these days is how he introduced Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to wife Laura, exclaiming, ‘Not one Indian Muslim has joined al Qaeda.’ For Bush, more than counterbalancing China, more than a booming middle class hungry for American goods, it is India’s democracy that makes it a ‘natural partner’ for the United States, a columnist wrote.
“President Bush’s Indian agenda isn’t part of some chess game with Pakistan. His trip may not have the romance and glitz of the 2000 visit by Bill Clinton, who danced exuberantly with village women. But if Clinton made India chic in America’s eyes, Bush plans to give it clout.”