Britain has a new Prime Minister of colour, Rishi Sunak, who has his roots in India and East Africa, once colonies of Britain. His parents were part of the Indian diaspora who moved to the UK in the 1960s and 1970 from East Africa.
Many Indians had earlier moved to the UK to set up businesses or for pursuing higher education. Thousands were even forced to leave Uganda when dictator Idi Amin expelled Indians in 1972.
Win Of The Diaspora
Sunak’s ascent in Britain is seen as a celebration of going against racial hierarchies. However, it has little to do with India as the parents of Rishi Sunak were born in Africa, and Rishi Sunak was born in Southampton.
This is the feat of one part of the Indian diaspora in Britain, who were accepted and embraced and helped to make progress as part of the country by its citizens and government.
Sunak had accepted in one of his tweets that he had faced racism in the country. “But a better society doesn’t happen overnight — like all great acts of creation, it happens slowly, and depends on the cooperation of each of us toward that common goal”, he tweeted.
Colonial Atrocities Never Acknowledged
In the name of trade, the greediness of Great Britain kept on increasing. They ended up hijacking the economic and political systems of the countries.
Around 1888, Britain colonized East Africa, where they started their trading in the 1400s. In India, around the year 1600, trade began, and in the 1700s, India became a colony. Colonialism is the story of the oppression of the working class. The elites were always happy with it.
The British amnesia was called out by Dr. Shashi Tharoor. He brought out the fact that Britain does not remember the atrocities committed by its empire. They have never apologized for the same.
The British educational system has never told the real story of the British Empire. There has been no awareness of the atrocities and the plunder of the colonies. The British had financed the Industrial Revolution from the loot of wealth and lives. “The fact you don’t really teach colonial history in your schools… children doing A-Levels in history don’t learn a line of colonial history,” said Tharoor.
Will The New PM Change The System?
Looking at his statements, and his party’s bent toward the conservative right, there is a lesser possibility that the past mistakes and crimes will be acknowledged by the PM. A video clip from a 2007 BBC documentary resurfaced in recent months in which Sunak suggests he doesn’t have any “working-class friends.”
Viewing his background, he has no connections to India directly. Yet, he emphasises his identity of being a Hindu, but that is not it. If he truly is an Indian, the truth of the colonial atrocities should be taught to the British students.
The Prime Minister of colour might have his paternal ancestral origins in India, but he is seen to be quite loyal to the country that accepted his parents. His manifesto did not mention anything new to the plate. He might be different in race but similar in class.
The man who himself studied in the British education system, not knowing about the seriousness of the matter, will be least interested in a peripheral issue of the history of Britain. It is doubtful that he will induce changes in the system. The primary question arises- Why are we Indians hailing him as a hero, and when will this hero worship stop?
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This post is tagged under: Rishi Sunak, Britain, Prime Minister, Colonial Rule, Colonial Atrocities, Shashi Tharoor, Indian-origin, education, the British system of education, Hindu, colour, racism, hero worship, hailing, India, Africa
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