Globally the word racist is now far more associated with India than casteist. Not that remain immured to a casteist mindset, but because of the waves of attacks against Blacks, North Easterners, Nepalese and Bangladeshis one tag has outstripped the other.
If confirmation was ever needed it came today from Bengaluru of all cities. In a horrific incident a mob assaulted and stripped a 21-year-old Tanzanian woman and burnt her car. It gets worse — the attack was on the back of a hit-and-run accident in which a Sudanese man is the main accused.
A short while later another unconnected car with the Tanzanian lady and three others was stopped and the nightmare started. The enraged mobs insisted she find the errant driver although there was no connection between the two. Reports say that the cops just stood by and did not lodge an FIR.
When we spoke to the Bangalore police commissioner he seemed to play down the incident and one Congress leader actually asked how we could believe a Tanzanian woman more than a Kannadiga. It’s almost as if all Blacks are mendacious.
This should not come as a surprise. Ambivalence to race attacks has meant that India now tops most racist nation surveys. Make no mistake the silence and inaction over these race attacks undermines India’s fight against race attacks on our own citizens in foreign countries. India has a massive race problem and as a former imperial colony we have a duty to fight it.