Thousands of people around the world gathered to mourn the sad demise of Oman’s ruling King, Sultan Qaboos.
Sultan Qaboos held the Arabian kingship for 50 long years and passed at the age of 79. He is not only one of the longest-serving Arab rulers but also the most benevolent one.
After dethroning his father in a bloodless coup, Sultan Qaboos took the throne and brought modernization to Arab. He emphasized on the education system and made major reforms.
He is known to maintain good foreign relations and had a special connection with India.
His Early Life
Sultan Qaboos’ full name is Qaboos bin Said Al Said.
He was born on 18th November 1940 and was the fourteenth-generation descendent from the House Of Al Said.
He was the only son of his father and he completed his early level education in England. Surprisingly, the Sultan had also served in the British army during his youth and finally returned to Oman in 1966.
Qaboos held a disturbed relationship with his father and was kept under house arrest by his own father for a long time. Soon, he rebelled against his father with the help of Britishers and acquired the throne of Oman.
His Golden Reign
Qaboos ruled the nation for a period of 50 years and his reign is declared to be one of the best ones in the history of the Arab countries.
He not only modernized the country with oil revenues but also promoted education and culture in Oman. He planned the infrastructure excellently and laid the utmost emphasis on development and innovation.
Sultan Qaboos ended Oman’s isolation with the world and build additional ports and universities to spread his country’s name worldwide. He introduced foreign policies that maintained Oman’s ties with Arab nations and also kept a balance between the West and Iran.
The Indian Connection
Surprisingly, the Sultan was very fond of India for both personal and professional reasons.
His relation with India dates back to his grandfather’s time. Qaboos’ grandfather was attached to the Indian culture and he even ruled Oman remotely from India for some time.
However, his personal connection boomed around his student days as he was taught by none other India’s former Prime Minister, Shanker Dayal Sharma at a small college in Pune.
Sultan Qaboos’ father was an alumnus of Mayo College, Ajmer and he in turn sent his son to Pune for education. India played a major role in his personality development and the Sultan never failed to extend his gratitude towards India for the same.
Impressed by the Indian culture and people, Qaboos always had a soft corner for our country and showed it innumerable times while maintaining his diplomatic relations.
On Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Muscat in 2018, Sultan personally sent in breakfast for our PM straight from his palace as a kind gesture.
Not only this, when Shanker Dayal Sharma who happened to be Qaboos’ former teacher visited Oman during his presidency, he arranged for a grand welcome for him of which the world talked about.
It doesn’t stop there, Qaboos was the chief architect of the Delhi-Muscat Partnership following Indo-Iran ties during the modern age. He has been overly generous towards India and has been always welcoming us.
It is also reported that India and Oman signed a Maritime Transport Agreement during a recent visit by the foreign minister S Jaishankar to the country.
A True Diplomat And Peacemaker
Qaboos was a wise leader who knew how to rule with dignity. He never entered into a conflict with any nation during his reign and was a peacemaker all along.
He played a major role in releasing Father Tom Uzhunnalil, the Vatican priest who was abducted in Yemen in 2016. The Sultan actively negotiated his liberation with both the parties and finally got him released in September 2017.
History says that Qaboos has always stepped out to get other hostages released from Arab nations.
India Announces One Day National Mourning
Following the death of such a noble leader, India announced one-day national mourning as a tribute to Sultan Qaboos on January 13, 2020. During this time, the Indian national flag will be at half mast and no national entertainment program will take place.
Not only this, a delegation from India headed by Union Minister Muqtar Abbas Naqvi will be visiting Oman as a token of condolence.
Oman is known to be one of India’s oldest strategic partners. Sultan Qaboos has undoubtedly made untiring efforts to maintain good relations with India, all in the name of a high school memory.
The Sultanate was taken up by Sultan’s nephew, Sultan Sayyid Haitham bin Tariq al Said. We hope that India is able to maintain good relations and harmony with Oman even after the departure of the beloved Sultan.
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