Yes, India is a cesspool of racism, particularly if you happen to be from one of the "backwards" communities, or from the North East. Prejudice haunts you throughout life. I've written a lot about the caste system in India and why it is such a huge tragedy for everyone involved. So when writing this blog post, I'm fully aware that the kettle is black, not just the pot.
Regardless, the truth must be reported and discussed.
There is no point hiding from the fact that mankind lives today in a terribly primitive state. Racism and stereotypes predominate, thus precluding any possibility of genuinely harmonious relationships.
In India I felt unwelcome in many places because I did not perfectly "fit in". Overall, however, I was still fairly comfortable with who I was.
On the other hand, in Australia I'm forced every few days to realise that I'm not one of "them", but a "foreigner" even though I'm now an Australian citizen. Indians have been forced to flee India because of its misgovernance but they end up in the West as second-class citizens.
What a fate for the proud Indians – once members of the world's richest nation for 12 out of the last 20 centuries, and the second richest for the remaining 6 out of 8 centuries. What a climb-down for India. What an INTOLERABLE shame that India has been RUINED BY MR. J.L.NEHRU AND HIS PROGENY. I do hope that FTIsucceeds in my lifetime and I can finally return home. This kind of a life – living as a "foreigner" in a foreign land – often becomes quite intolerable. No self-respecting Indian, I think, would EVER live in the West if India was well-governed. But Mr. Nehru's STUPID ideas and his even more stupid and corrupt progeny and godchildren, force us to stay away.
Surprisingly, it is the "leftists" and "socialists" of the West who are the least racist. I got a job in Australia within a couple of months upon arrival because of one such "lefty" (may God bless him). It was a very lucky break since it is extremely hard for an Indian – despite all the qualifications and experience he or she may bring – to get a job in Australia commensurate with his or her skills. It doesn't matter in Australia whether you have a doctorate from a top-tier Western university, you will still be ranked on par with a local high school graduate. This bias has been demonstratedthrough numerous studies.
They say that there is a glass ceiling for women in the West. Well, there's a much thicker glass ceiling for Indians in the West. It is virtually unheard of that an Indian will be considered for senior roles despite the so-called emphasis on merit in this country.
Earlier, I wrote about least two instances of racism that I've experienced from relatively junior staff . But senior executives are heavily bigoted, as well.
a) I was having drinks after work with one of my bosses as part of a team celebration, and this boss was soon going to Darwin for a holiday. The talk turned to the weather and she said it was going to be around 32 degrees but fortunately dry, given it is winter in Australia. She added that she hated the humidity of the rainy season in Darwin. But having said that, she could not resist adding that "you may, of course, like it". Undoubtedly she knows NOTHING about the human body. But what this shows, above all, is that when she looks at me she sees my SKIN COLOUR, not who I am (and, of course, FOOLISHLY imagines that skin colour has anything to do with homeostatis or the perception of humidity or heat).
b) I was talking to a boss and tried to discuss Australia's policy on India. What he said is significant: He said that India should be treated just like Papua New Guinea. To compare India with a tiny country like Papua New Guinea is of course absurd. But from the way he said this, it was clear that he looked down upon India – despite India having now having the world's third largest GDP in PPP terms. I had taken great pains to send this boss a copy of my book, and asked him whether he had read it. He had not.
If at all there is value to Australia in "importing" Indians like me, it is in how our knowledge and experience can be put to productive use for the benefit of Australia. But that's clearly irrelevant to (at least some of) these people who still live in the racist world of the past.
c) During the last Christmas office party (which goes on late into the night – I had long left that party), one of my bosses sent me a foul-mouthed text message on my mobile phone. I asked him about this and he said his phone must have been temporarily stolen. However, he has till today not bothered to investigate this matter and report to me what actually transpired. How did someone take his phone from his pocket without his knowledge? Is this a racist incident? I'm not sure it is, but it is definitely not something anyone should have to undergo from a boss anywhere.
There have been MANY such (or similar) instances during the past ten years. All these incidents re-confirm that there is a HUGE amount of racism in the West. True, this is soft racism, not hard racism. Just because these people see my skin colour, not me, doesn't mean they will kill me. But they do, through various minor incidents, make CLEAR that I am different.
That Australia runs a migration program looking for skilled workers is a bit of a joke. If every second minute Indians in Australia are made conscious of their skin colour, and that they are different, then they won't EVER feel they are Australians. Indeed, there is a good possibility that such behaviour will ultimately backfire on Australia.
Had India followed good policies and not become such a miserable Third World dog, barely achieving ONE TENTH of its potential, I would NEVER have left India. This is not the kind of life one wants to lead – in the midst of racists.
Please join FTI. Let's liberate India and allow all Indians to return to India by making India a truly great place to live.
I don't hold grudges or hard feelings, but let me assure Australia that many of the good feelings I had for it have slowly dissipated over the years. That's NOT good for Australia. Don't lose friends, I'd say. One day you may live to regret it.