Never too late

India is teaching the Taliban how to run an economy

Immersing with Indian Thoughts, a four-day virtual course of IIM Kozhikode, began on Tuesday

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Image: Staff Photographer (Reuters)

In its effort to stay engaged with the Taliban, India has invited officials of the Afghanistan government to attend a crash course on its culture, legislation, and business climate.

The four-day virtual course, Immersing with Indian Thoughts, began yesterday (March 14). India’s ministry of external affairs has organized the course through the Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode under the aegis of the India Technical and Economic Cooperation Programme (ITEC), a bilateral assistance programme of the Indian government.


“All those working for the current government can receive the online training after a process of selection by relevant authorities,” a March 14 Bloomberg report quoted Suhail Shaheen as saying. Shaheen is a senior Taliban diplomat in Doha, Qatar, where the Taliban has a political office.

Notably, India hasn’t formally recognized the Taliban regime in Afghanistan since it seized power in 2021 following months of violence. It did, however, re-open its embassy in Kabul last year.


What will the Taliban learn?

The course on India will provide the participants with an opportunity to understand the economic environment and cultural heritage of the country, among other things.


“India’s uniqueness lies in its unity in diversity which makes it seem like a complex space for outsiders. This programme facilitates a deeper understanding of the latent order within the apparent chaos that will help foreign officials and executives gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of India’s business environment,” the course synopsis read.


Delegates from countries other than Afghanistan are also attending the course. There will be up to 30 participants—a mix of government officials, senior management executives, and entrepreneurs—according to ITEC’s website.

“This technical assistance could be the starting point of a larger humanitarian and aid package of India to the Taliban,” Farid Mamundzay, Afghanistan’s ambassador in New Delhi, told Bloomberg.