t evoked a smile, when the market leader (arguably, a thought leader also) of the Pakistani satire industry, Majorly Profound wrote how ‘Indians are Indians and Pakistanis when caught in tight situations (like in Airports) are Indians too.’
When Things Get Tough
But, on a more serious note – and a more recent case, a Pakistani health worker in the US, in an intensive care unit, caught in the Boston Marathon bombings, recounted his thoughts and reactions.
As a 20-something Pakistani male with dark stubble (an ode more to my hectic schedule as a resident in the intensive-care unit than to any aesthetic or ideology), would I not fit the bill? I know I look like Hollywood’s favorite post-cold-war movie villain. I’ve had plenty of experience getting intimately frisked at airports. Was it advisable to go back to pick up my friend’s camera that he had forgotten in his child’s stroller in the mall? I remember feeling grateful that I wasn’t wearing a backpack, which I imagined might look suspicious. My mind wandered to when I would be working in the intensive care unit the next day, possibly taking care of victims of the blast. What would I tell them when they asked where I was from (a question I am often posed)? Wouldn’t it be easier to just tell people I was from India or Bangladesh?
via Living Through Terror, in Rawalpindi and Boston – NYTimes.com.
Can Western Islamophobia be calmed if you are from India?
Something, somewhere, someone must have done the right things, to be in this situation.
R K Laxman, The Times of India, Jan 10 2003
Come Home To London
Not many remember how in the late 70s, British immigration authorities subjected Indian women to virginity tests – to prove what, I could never understand.
If you thought that only Tories, Right-Whingers and Conservations were racists, the Prime Minister of UK at that time was a Labour leader, Jim Callaghan.
But London is a strange place.
As Vir Sanghvi found out a few years ago, dealing with rather rude and surly staff at Heathrow – seemingly, only to Indians. Turns out that Vir Sanghvi was talking of rude and surly British-Indians manning the counters at London Heathrow.
More recently, a Brown American blogger, was found in the blogosphere, nonchalantly referring to Indians as dogs. In writing, openly and publicly. When challenged, obstinately, he chose to defend his uncivil attitude.
Just shows that culture is nothing to do with genes. It is all about satsang.
Keep bad company …
Big Stories From Vague Questions
But rather indicative was a recent poll by a British advertising agency.
One of those vague polls that PEW Centre specializes in. Do Hindus Hate Muslims more than Muslims Hate Hindus type of polls. Where people at PEW judge a nation by asking 2000 people out of 20 crore (200 million), very broad questions – and seem to get rather precise answers.
But all said, these polls can be indicative. Sometimes at least. OK. Rarely, if you must insist.
In this case, turns out rather to the dislike of British media who has been rather quiet about this poll in the last one month. A tweet message to the ‘Insight Director’ got no response – seemingly because he accesses his Twitter account
After a year-long study, a British media agency, OMD revealed that 32% of Britons in the 16-24 age group think that India is probably the country they would prefer to be born in as India afforded more opportunities. Younger Britons who think that India would be best, is higher at 36%.
Cartoon by Kirtish Bhatt; on bamulahija on January 09, 2010
India beat off not only the other major emerging economies, but the US too. Cool Brazil was the choice of 29% of those polled, followed by Russia (28%), China (27%) and the US (26%), according to the study conducted by the communications agency OMD UK.
“It’s not that people are rushing to exit England, but there is a sense of people being aware that Britain is no longer the power that it was economically, and that growth will be driven by new economies.”
via Brits would rather have been born Indian – Hindustan Times.
A man should know his limits.
Now Britishers are a tough act. After 200 years in India, it made no difference.
They are still in the same game. Of war, killing, loot, fraud, murder, etc.