The disturbing rise of Hindutva supremacism in India has been mirrored by a corresponding growth of extremism in the Indian diaspora, particularly in the UK where the efforts of such groups are now feeding into public policy decisions, says Amrit Wilson. In the six weeks or so before UK’s 2019…

In Solidarity by Marziya Mohammedali

Volume 17, Issue 2 | Published 07/10/2020  
I write this on the lands of the Whadjuk people of the Noongar nation, and I humbly acknowledge them as the traditional custodians of the lands on which I live, work and play. I pay my respect to the elders of this land, past, present and emerging, and acknowledge that…
You go through two stages in these colonial countries. One is when midnight comes; the clock strikes, and you are independent. Fine. But then begins a whole process of changing conditions and changing people. I had been talking to the people, telling them that the second process would not be…

The Harvest of Casteism by Suraj Yengde

Volume 17, Issue 2 | Published 07/10/2020  
The caste system in India thrives on what BR Ambedkar, a Dalit leader who was the chief drafter of the Indian Constitution, described as ‘Graded Inequality’—a seemingly infinite fragmentation of castes and sub-castes, the position of each dependent on its discrimination and violence against those it claims superiority over. The…

In Defence of Blackness by Tariq Mehmood

Volume 17, Issue 2 | Published 07/10/2020  
Even before the murder of George Floyd, America and the United Kingdom (where I live) were well versed in state sanctioned killings. Watching the daily news on American or British mainstream media, I can almost hear the sorry in the voice of some reporters, decrying that somehow 'racism is going…
The current coronavirus outbreak has laid bare structural inequalities in the UK including in Britain’s health care system. It was the devastating reality of our disposability that was undoubtedly a trigger to the level of world-wide response to George Floyd’s death in the middle of the pandemic. The video of…

What Does It Mean To Be 'African'? by Firoze Manji

Volume 17, Issue 2 | Published 07/10/2020  
The apartheid state of South Africa, as did the colonial regime in Kenya, used the term 'African' to classify people who had a particular skin colour, curly hair, and certain facial features, based on the assumptions that separate the human species into 'races'. Others use the term to refer to…
South Africa’s colonial and apartheid past has bequeathed deep cleavages of race, class, tribalism and ethnicity. Although apartheid formally ended over a quarter of century ago, these divisions persist today and threaten social cohesion and the project of nation building. The Ahmed Kathrada Foundation, which I have the privilege to…

Bhimrao R Ambedkar: An Assessment Of A Dalit Icon by Karim F Hirji

Volume 17, Issue 2 | Published 07/10/2020  
India today suffers from deep, painful fractures along class, caste, religious, gender and ethnic lines. Under the BJP government led by Narendra Modi, these apparently intractable schisms have intensified. Yet, there is a person who, though long gone, seems to embody hopes for a broadly amicable existence. No, it is…
The Black Lives Matter movement, originating in the US, is having a major impact globally. This is the largest protest movement against racism, at least since the fall of apartheid and probably since the Civil Rights Movement in the US in the 1960s. We all need to reflect on its…

Tribute to the Shaheen Bagh Women Protestors by Nandita Haksar

Volume 17, Issue 2 | Published 07/10/2020  
These women have become a symbol for resistance and women’s empowerment for the entire country. This year International Women’s Day will be 25 years since the Beijing Platform for Action which aimed at removing the systemic barriers that hold women back from equal participation in all areas of life, whether…

Why This Almost Blind Reverence of Mahatma Gandhi? by Zarina Patel

Volume 17, Issue 2 | Published 07/10/2020  
Mahatma Gandhi is no doubt one of the great leaders of our time who has left a lasting impact on world history. He was, however, a human being and therefore neither infallible nor perfect. Nor was he some God-like saint/prophet criticism of whom should be regarded as sacrilegious. Gandhi himself…

Poems by S Chandramohan, a Dalit Writer

Volume 17, Issue 2 | Published 07/10/2020  
KILLING THE SHAMBUKA (Inspired by a famous poem on black lynching) Jim Crow segregated hostel rooms Ceiling fans bear a strange fruit, Blood on books and blood on papers, A black body swinging in mute silence, Strange fruit hanging from tridents. This poem draws is inspiration from the poem STRANGE…