Should the Indian community ask for official apology?

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Venkat Raman
Auckland, July 15, 2021

Just writing a curtain-raiser to the forthcoming book (titled, ‘Invisible’) by Jacqueline Leckie would make one pause and reflect on the agony that settlers from India must have experienced in a land that promised them a good future but delivered very little.

In 1926, an editorial in the Franklin Times identified Indians as a ‘threat’ to civilised nationhood in New Zealand proclaiming the following: “The serious danger with which civilisation is threatened does not come from actual savages or even those of a little plane (sic), who may be called barbarians. The peril is from those dark-skinned races which have long ago put on a thin veneer of semi-civilisation but have remained for centuries without rising any higher or are constitutionally incapable of rising any higher. No better example of this class can be found than the Hindus… mentally and morally incapable of real civilisation.

If a newspaper Editor in New Zealand published a similar statement today, they would probably be prosecuted.

Casual racism challenges

Ms Locke says, “Over the course of the twentieth century, discrimination against Indians in Aotearoa New Zealand slowly changed at the legislative level, but this did not mean an end to racism, which persists in many guises. Casual racism has been one of the most painful challenges to Kiwi-Indians, and one of the most difficult to erase; stereotyping and everyday hostility has impeded many from settling and making a livelihood here,” she said.

Is there a cause for demanding an official apology for the discrimination and exclusion that the community suffered and in many ways continues to suffer even today? What kind of corrective action should the government take in its quest towards inclusion and social cohesion? Can we expect a better morrow?

Welcome to Indian Newslink Digital Edition of July 15, 2021 and read more.

The issue leads with an explainer as to why the government has provided $2.75 million to the Mongrel Mob, a famous gang in New Zealand.

We have the usual departments- Education, Fiji and Pacific Islands, Business, Opinion, Community, Entertainment and Sports.

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