Twitter giggles as Pakistan, China launch RANDI think tank

Published: April 21, 2015


ISLAMABAD: Chinese President Xi Jinping’s two-day visit to Pakistan has been replete with flowery rhetoric extolling mutual love between both countries, but the name chosen for a new joint think tank has left some social media users in titters.

Dedicated to research on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a $46 billion dollar plan linking China’s restive west to the Arabian Sea, the newly inaugurated Research and Development International (RANDI) organisation has been widely pilloried because its acronym sounds like “whore” in Urdu and Hindi.

Read: Trade corridor tops Chinese investment bonanza

Social media users, including many from India — Islamabad and Beijing’s historic rival — have latched on to name as a form of commentary on Sino-Pak relations, saying the South Asian country has now been ‘bought’ by China.

“Well, that’s an unfortunate name for a think tank…” tweeted Fatima Bhutto, a writer and political activist, in one of the more understated responses.

Read: Baloch ire prompts security fears for China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

According to a press release, the think tank will be co-headed by Madame Zhao Baige, a member of China’s parliament, and Mushahid Hussain, a Pakistani opposition senator.

“The new think tank is the first joint initiative of China and Pakistan which will be dedicated to research on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor,” said Mushahid, who added it was associated with the prestigious Tsinghua University.

The economic corridor will create a network of roads, railways and pipelines linking China’s restive west to the Arabian Sea through Pakistan as part of Beijing’s plans to expand its trade and transport footprint across Central and South Asia.

The project dwarfs previous efforts to assist Pakistan’s underperforming economy, but analysts have cautioned that the lion’s share of the returns would likely go to China.

Some of the tweets mocking the name can be viewed here:

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (18)

  • Hawkins
    Apr 21, 2015 - 4:24PM

    It should have been RDI instead, but I still believe that there is more wrong with the people`s mentality than with the actual acronym itself. Recommend

  • Adil Zulfiqar
    Apr 21, 2015 - 4:41PM

    The actual acronym is #RADI . But india is so desperate to find some space in #PakChinaFriendship they ended up being #RANDIRecommend

  • Ahmad
    Apr 21, 2015 - 5:02PM

    Where in N in Research and Development International? It read RADI Recommend

  • Rumormonger
    Apr 21, 2015 - 5:02PM

    The group of people who named this think tank are in total disconnect with the languages of Pakistan, or it was done totally on purpose. I am inclined to believe the latter.Recommend

  • sunny
    Apr 21, 2015 - 5:06PM

    Wow! It looks like whole world is following and covering Chinese president visit to Pakistan. It proves that world is very curious about Pakistan. Recommend

  • Pakistani
    Apr 21, 2015 - 5:22PM

    Lets see if PTA will take any action.Recommend

  • Baloch
    Apr 21, 2015 - 6:54PM

    It’s actually RDI.Recommend

  • rizwan
    Apr 21, 2015 - 9:10PM

    Well I doubt the name, but if it is the case then they might have honoured one of the most ancient profession on earth. Now adays with so many fashionable names and titles most of the professsionals do the same act but in a broader sense. As far as persons related to this community/profession are concerned, they do have lots of tacts and tricks at their sleeves deemed essential nowadays to exel both locally and internationally.Recommend

  • 3rdRockFromTheSun
    Apr 22, 2015 - 12:24AM

    Well, looks like the ‘Think Tank’ didn’t ‘Think’ things through!Recommend

  • GI Joe
    Apr 22, 2015 - 3:24AM

    As usual our low IQ neighbors unable to even figure out a basic acronym. By all standards, the acronym is RDI.Recommend

  • Apr 22, 2015 - 4:39AM

    Firstly the acronym is RADI. Critics please look at the bigger picture. Clearly there are some unhappy and jealous mindsets that will never change. All the best to Pak-China friendship.Recommend

  • raw is war
    Apr 22, 2015 - 7:19AM

    Pakistan offers itself as a “RANDI” for aid ?Recommend

  • harkol
    Apr 22, 2015 - 8:34AM

    @Adil Zulfiqar:

    I don’t think India can be blamed for this! Apparently “Pakistan-China Institute” chose this acronym. Surely, urdu speakers within that institute were sleeping?

    Having said that – I can’t help but smile at the appropriateness of the Acronym.Recommend

  • Ahsen
    Apr 22, 2015 - 11:13AM

    It’s RDI. Recommend

  • Hawkins
    Apr 22, 2015 - 12:35PM

    I wonder why doesn`t the ET mods block the vehement hate speech of our Indian neighbors , but in a way its a good thing as well. Doing this our neighbors across the border show their true colors to the whole world making a non issue an issue instead of analyzing the strategic depth of the deal.

    @raw is war
    Seeing how much importance Indians are giving to this, its a no surprise for anyone why India is famously known as the “Rape Capital” of the world.

    ET I hope that this will get publishe. Recommend

  • Naren
    Apr 22, 2015 - 2:40PM

    For two nights only, Chinese President is giving too much.Recommend

  • Mohammad
    Apr 24, 2015 - 9:47AM

    There was an N which was subsequently removed. Check out photos of the launch on google. Everyone knew Pakistan was sleeping with China but did they have to make it so obvious? A better name would have been CHINAL.Recommend

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