‘Most frightening rise of nationalism in India’: philanthropist George Soros at Davos

World increasingly ruled by ‘would-be or actual dictators’, says US Financer and Investor George Soros at the World Economic Forum.

DAVOS| George Soros criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi accusing him of creating a “Hindu nationalist” state and threatening to strip Muslims of their citizenship. Soros criticised rising populism internationally and took a dig at US President Donald Trump, China’s Xi Jinping, Modi and Brexit.

Speaking at the Annual Meeting WEF in Davos on Thursday, George Soros said that the rise of nationalism across the globe was the great enemy of open society.

While speaking on nationalism he said, “Far from being reversed, it made further headway. The biggest and most frightening setback came in India, where a democratically elected Narendra Modi is creating a Hindu nationalist state.”

Mr Soros also accused Modi of imposing “punitive measures on Kashmir, a semi-autonomous Muslim region”. He also alleged that Modi was “threatening” to strip millions of Muslims of their citizenship.

His remarks today are even more important with regards to the dissent all over India.

Also read: “Under PM Modi, Kashmir will flourish”, says Amit Shah

While attacking US President, Soros said “President Trump is a con man and the ultimate narcissist who wants the world to revolve around him. When his fantasy of becoming president came true, his narcissism developed a pathological dimension. Indeed, he has transgressed the limits imposed on the presidency by the Constitution and has been impeached for it. At the same time, he has managed to gather a large number of followers who have bought into his alternative reality. This has turned his narcissism into malignant disease. He came to believe that he could impose his alternative reality not only on his followers but on reality itself.”

He expressed angst that the world’s biggest powers — the United States, China and Russia under President Vladimir Putin — were “in the hands of would-be or actual dictators and the ranks of authoritarian rulers continued to grow”, adding that, “most troublingly, Chinese President Xi Jinping was seeking to bring into existence “a new type of authoritarian system and a new type of human being who is willing to surrender his personal autonomy in order to stay out of trouble.”

Soros said humanity was at a turning point and the coming years would determine the fate of rulers like Trump and Xi.

“We live at a transformational moment in history. The survival of open societies is endangered and we face an even greater crisis: climate change,” said the Hungarian-born billionaire.

Soros has pledged $1 billion to set up an international educational network, Open Society University Network (OSUN), for teaching and research. He described the plan of the Open Society University Network (OSUN) as “the most important project of my life” and would be an international platform for teaching and research that existing universities all over the world would be able to join.

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