With the resignation of Boris Johnson the race has been on to find a new prime minister. This is July 2022 and it looks as if the front runner is Rishi Sunak, the former chancellor. Indeed the race for leading the Conservative Party, and indeed the country was noticeable by the presence of so many from minority backgrounds: Sajid Javid, Nadim Zahawi, Kemi Badenoch. This is the same Conservative Party which at the dawn of this century was trying hard to shake off its racist image and be welcoming to minorities. Sadly, the race for party leadership has once again allowed prejudice to surface and flourish.
Hinduphobia in the Election Contest
Home Secretary Priti Patel has drawn the ire of antiracist activists by deporting illegal immigrants to Rwanda. On the hard right of the party, she embodies those principles of restricted immigration, harsh punitive punishment, leaving the EU, and a generally tough line. Married to Alex Sawyer and with a son called Freddie, she epitomises the integration and assimilation of immigrants par excellence.
But this of course did not prevent her Hindu background from being used by the left-leaning Guardian to portray her in bovine caricature. More generally on the left that Hindu background which she barely identifies with, has been used to link her to India’s BJP and associated RSS.
Hence it is no surprise that with Rishi Sunak running as leader, all the nasty racist and Hinduphobic stereotypes resurface. Sunak is accused of wanting to amass wealth for his Brahmin caste when his background is actually Khatri. With his vast wealth, he is accused of wanting to impose the caste system on the British and not be concerned about the masses who are getting increasingly impoverished. He is attacked for having sworn his parliamentary oath on the Bhagavad Gita which is not only a foreign book but apparently again supports that old bogey, the caste system.
The list of accusations go on, and are by both those on the left and right. On Twitter, they overlap so much it is hard to distinguish who is the self-proclaimed anti-racist on the left, as much as who is the hardcore racist neonazi type on the right. Both the racism and Hinduphobia are indistinguishable.
While Islamophobia is often overlapped with racism, and recognised as such, the same cannot be said for Hinduphobia, which is barely recognised at all. In fact the very idea is scoffed at by British commentators on both left and right.
This is despite the fact that the first use of the term Hinduphobia is in 1866, in a work by Edward Sullivan, where he criticises James Mill for denying the wealth of India prior to Akbar. The term is as if common parlance being casually employed by the York Newspaper of Yorkshire, England of 20 March 1883. It is a critique of the media responses within Europe to minor political changes from which are expected “terrible things”.
Person, not Policy
It is perfectly fine to attack Priti Patel for her harsh immigration policy. It is fine to attack Rishi Sunak for his wife avoiding tax, and for being out of touch with the mass of British people who are now facing increasing hardship as the cost of living crisis bites. Even those with orthodox Thatcherite views are valid in attacking him for his increase on taxes. But on social media what dominates are attacks on Rishi because of his specific ethnic and religious background.
Now, this is a problem for even someone as integrated as Priti Patel who swore her oath on the Bible and only belatedly began to assert aspects of her Hindu background due to her idolisation by sections of self-appointed Hindu leadership in the UK.
Being married to someone of white English background, as is Shailesh Vara, Sajid Javid and Suella Braverman only adds to this fear of the ‘great replacement’ of white people by invading hordes of other races.
However much you serve and identify the country you live in does not matter. Such people are concerned with issues of race, not nationality. At the heart of this is the fact that after the last world war, the British Nationality Act 1948 was used by existing and former colonial subjects to come to the mother country and change the existing demographic. What is often forgotten is that it happened in reverse.
White Windrush Generation
In his 1968 Rivers of Blood speech, Enoch Powell feared the effect mass immigration would have on Britain. A highly intelligent man, powerful orator and immersed in the classics, Powell won mass support from dock workers, meat packers and other working class whites, despite killing his political career within the Conservative Party.
He was to remain an messianic figure for the hard right Monday Club which sat within the Conservative Party until this century, advocating repatriation of ‘immigrants’ without the open Nazi identification of more hardline fringe outfits such as the National Front.
However, Powell was not just influenced by the race riots which were plaguing cities across America. Having once served in India as an officer, with aspirations to be viceroy, Powell also did not want to import ‘communalism’ into the UK. It was ironic that both elements had their origins with the Britain Powell so dearly loved.
It was English colonists to America who had imported African slaves to work sugar plantations on whose wealth Britain had built its industrial powerhouse. In the case of India, it was the British Raj who has nurtured and supported Islamic separatism culminating with the formation of Pakistan in 1947; and thereafter supplied it with arms and backed the jihad in Kashmir under the guise of self-determination.
Now the mass immigration from West Indies, Indian subcontinent, parts of Africa which began after 1948 was legal. The question put by hardcore racists who cannot stand the site of Sunak or Patel is that the masses of white indigenous people did not ask for this mass immigration and were never consulted. This ignores a few inconvenient facts. One of them is that it was actually Enoch Powell as health minister who facilitated the import of Indian doctors to fill a much-needed labour gap within the National Health Service.
Another is the period that also witnessed mass immigration from UK. The white population of then Rhodesia grew massively as British settlers arrived. Australia, desperate for white only migrants offered a generous subsidised package to British migrants. Were the natives of those places consulted? Well in Rhodesia they formed the majority but were largely disenfranchised and segregated. In Australia, they did not have the vote until 1967 and were reduced to a persecuted minority. They were also not ‘consulted’.
But such facts are not relevant to the racists of both left and right. Sunak is a problem because he remains ‘foreign’. He does not look indigenous. He swore his oath on a ‘foreign’ book, and not the Bible; itself originally written in ancient Greek, then Latin, then in an English no longer in use because it is hundreds of years old.
Search for Utopia
Since the collapse of communism sections of the left have searched hard for the ideal socialist fatherland. Former Labour MP George Galloway was mocked for trying to find this under Saddam’s Iraq; the same place which had actually been close to right-wing policymakers in the USA.
The same quest has been a burden for the hard right. Just as with parts of the left, many thought they found it in Putin’s Russia. This was the ideal homeland free from mass immigration threatening the white majority and from woke culture.
Of course, just as with Enoch Powell’s immigration policy this did have some embarrassing inconsistencies. Putin is nationalist but not in the ethnic sense as he commands a vast pluralistic empire.
His closest ally is Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov who has implemented sharia law and built a large mosque. Russia itself was ruled for two centuries by the Golden Horde, a large empire of the Mongols. The Russian state owes as much to this Mongol yoke as it does to European ethnic and cultural elements. Then the invasion of Ukraine, itself a training camp for white nationalist neonazi groups, but these racial idealists into an even greater dilemma.
This is what we see with the attacks on Sunak. Self-appointed Hindu leaders like to boast how law-abiding they are unlike Muslim-dominated street and trafficking gangs. How much do they contribute to the economy? How loyal they are. But these positive aspects can also be owned by Muslim and other communities in the UK.
As for crime, this ignores the white collar crime which those of affluent backgrounds are in a better position to commit.
The fact is that when so-called Hindu leaders contrast themselves with Muslims and others, in the minds of the racist there is no difference. Just as Jews in interwar Germany were integrated, assimilated and part of the very fabric of German society, did not make one iota of difference when selection came for the gas chambers, or as the Nazis put it ‘resettlement’ and the Final Solution.
In terms of religious background, Hinduism is seen as a pagan threat to Britain’s Christian heritage. Again this ignores that church attendance is falling dramatically and only kept up before Brexit by the influx of devout Catholics from Poland, and now with evangelical churches that are overwhelmingly black and led by African immigrants. Indeed before it was Christian, Britain like all of Europe was pagan, and had more affinity with Sunak taking his oath on the Bhagavad Gita than Patel doing the same on the Bible. But this matters not to detractors and those who ignore the truth. It is a tragedy of cataclysmic proportions to have a national leader of ethnic minority background and above all someone who does not disown his Hindu background. All else is secondary. If there was any doubt Hinduphobia exists and flourishes, this is it.
Use of the term ‘Hinduphobia’ – 1866-1997
Gentleman, There’s No Such Thing As Hinduphobia , Death To The Heathen !!!
Civilising the ‘Hindoo’ Savage : Part One