The ‘racism’ word understandably provokes a fair amount of discomfort since it presents an unattractive picture which stands in sharp contrast to the official “unity in diversity” rhetoric. And yet it is a little ironic that even as we fume with righteous indignation at the treatment of Indians in the United States or Europe, we are shocked when we are accused of racism ourselves.
Earlier this month in Bengaluru, a 33-year-old major in the Indian army was pulled out of his vehicle and was brutally assaulted by an auto driver and four others near the SCT Institute of Technology on Kaggadasapura main road.
The major found himself staring at an auto driver berating him for being a North Indian who did not know how to drive on city roads, raises a deeper problem on how even the out of state defense forces are not safe in Bangalore.
The city is known for its Xenophobia and its police ethics which treats all non-Kannadigas as if they are ISIS affiliates and don’t deserve to be in the state. For these people every situation with people from the North-East or North is to be dealt with hostility and bigotry.
You may move to India’s IT capital with dreams and aspirations, but sooner or later you will feel like an unwelcome refugee in your own country.
According to a Hindustan Times report, four of the nine men arrested for the assault are reportedly with a pro-Kannada organiZation.
Such attacks have always happened, and the state machinery is forever in denial. It’s unfair that a beautiful city of beautiful people gets shamed regularly at the hands of ubiquitous bad apples and insensitive netas. It’s unrealistic to expect the latest incident will spark a paradigm shift.