The State Of Racism In India Today: How Nigerians & Africans Are Hated Without A Cause

racism in india nigerians africans

May 15, 2016 – The State Of Racism In India Today: How Nigerians & Africans Are Hated Without A Cause 

Racism in India: And “Yannick passed away…” by ‘Lakunle Jaiyesimi

“You’re standing at a zoo, and looking at a caged animal, admiring it, scrutinizing every aspect of it, observing its walk, its skin. Now imagine you’re that caged animal and people are gawking at you like you’re an alien, like you don’t belong. That is how black citizens of African nations say they feel in India, they aren’t caged but they might as well be.” – Sarakshi Rai.

A few days ago in Greater Noida, some Hausa boys were allegedly beaten up by an Indian mob, while the reverse was published in the media (that Indians were beaten up by the Hausa boys). Whereas, the reality was that an Indian boy, with rich but uneducated father, snapped pictures of a Hausa boy and was asked to delete same but would not budge. He called his father and that led to the Hausa boys being attacked. This event led to sabotage on public facilities that fed the Africans (including but not limited to the disruption of power supply); this, ultimately leading to the ejection of Africans, who had to resort to emergent searching for new shelter, with its attendant challenges.

Sometimes, it is a wonder what globalization, in the sense of globetrotting (let’s content ourselves with singly traveling from one’s own country to another’s), may do to one, one’s family and one’s internal peace, when confronted by the dastardly racism that some countries (or some of their citizens) are associated with.

According to The Times of India on July 4, 2014, she received “a cryptic one-line email from Yannick’s father, Nestor Ntibateganya,” from Burundi which “should be enough to shake Punjab’s conscience, “Yannick passed away in the night of 1st July 2014.”
Yannick Nihangaza was a student of Computer Engineering at Lovely Professional University in the Jalandhar district in the state of Punjab, India. Indiatimes reports, “He was the victim of mindless violence, which many felt also had racial overtones. He was attacked in the Defence Colony area of Jalandhar on the night of April 21, 2012 by nine local youths, all in their mid-20s and from well-off families.”

This attack followed an altercation these local youths had “with some African students outside a liquor shop near the bus stand….” They spotted Yannick and attacked him though he had nothing to do with the other group of African students. “The brutal attack had left him with severe head injuries and in coma from which he never recovered.”
Let us take for granted the fact that many Indians travel to other countries for pleasure, work and business especially; this is predicated on Indians expectation that they would be treated fairly and justly wherever they may go around the world. That is to also speculate (with huge index of certainty) that there must be many Indians who believe in multiracial interactions and are therefore hospitable to humans of other colours. However, these exposed and educated ‘sub-species’ must really be few considering the majority others that are not.

The case of Yannick took place in the Punjabi area, where it is believed that most Indians are hospitable. What should be expected in other notorious spots? The cases of discriminations, hurling of racist abuses and outright acts of racism have become so common-placed in parts of India (apology to Indians and parts of India that are largely exempted from this drama) that a synthesis from the potpourri of reported (and unreported) news headlines would make a sweet-smelling sacrifice on the altar of ‘Lucifer-ous’ agents, “India is Racist”. The antithesis to this (as against the hitherto extant thesis) has it that it is not true, as occasioned by the press, the security agents and many Indians who do well as to twist the stories or play them down.

Beyond Yannick, there have been cases of racist violence (too numerous to detail here) including the barbaric assault of a Tanzanian student in Bangalore, within days of which a 26-year-old Nigerian was allegedly beaten up in the upmarket Banjara Hills by a mob.
While the fair-skinned foreigners get treated like VIPs, dark-skinned ones get the treatment of scums of the earth. If the latter reacts, it risks uproar and the subsequent mob action of Indians as reported in the case of the Delhi metro mob action, At the police officer’s office, after the students were beaten up, the mob was shouting “Bharat Mata Ki Jai” (Glory to mother India) and “Vande Mataram” (Jai india). Indian Times made a video of what foreign students undego in India titled, “No Country For ‘Black’ Men?”

Personal accounts of two women, “They (Indians) just talk among themselves while looking at you directly and just start laughing.” “I couldn’t even go and eat at the college mess because people would stare and laugh at me.” “The police treats us Africans like dogs,” Sambo Davis, a Nigerian married to an Indian woman who has “tolerant Christians” as parents, says.

Other faces of racism in India include, but not limited to, discrimination in the provision of rental services (with Africans being rejected or having to pay more than their Indian or light-skinned peers). Davis continues, “When they go to rent flats in a normal building they are told – ‘you are a black man, you are Nigerian, and you are not wanted’. This is racism.”

On her own, Mrs Davis is “embarrassed and ashamed” by the behaviour of the Indian people towards black Africans. “When I used to go to a mall or if I walked with him, I always wanted him to hold my hand. But when people saw me with him, they thought I was from a bad family or even a prostitute.” Earlier, she did not understand why black people were being looked down upon, but now she says she does. “Because our society is obsessed with white skin. If I had married a white man, I would have gained more friends and society’s approval too.”

One would have thought (in attempting a rationalisation) that the ill-treatment meted to Nigerians (especially, amongst other dark-skinned persons) must have been due to certain previous and unwholesome acts perpetrated by Nigerians (as claimed, many Indians believe all black women prostitute and that the black men sell drugs and are violent, blah blah blah), in which case, even if true, there might have been a sort of implied justification for been careful (and not, never ever racism as observed) in dealing with such persons (however, logic and evidence may explain why this cannot be). On the other hand, it is known, in many quarters, that Indians are racist with their fellow Indians (with the lighter-skinned Indians considering the darker-skinned as slaves and made to do all the manual labors as brick layers, security guards, cleaners, messengers, drivers and even house maids, yet paid extremely low). It was obvious that the fight for the supremacy of race motivated this attack. It may be significant to mention a pervasive trend amongst the Indians, whose caste system recognizes (though, illegally) discrimination against the dark-skinned Indians, a situation seeing many of the latter using varieties of whitening body creams to avoid the pitfalls of being dark-skinned.

The perception of hatred of Nigerians by many Indians have led to a situation, where many actual criminals, prostitutes and drug dealers claim they are Nigerians when caught whereas they are not. The unsuspecting press rushes to publish such screaming headlines without prior and thorough investigation. This begs caution while interpreting some of the misleading headlines out.

The case of established discriminations in India is nothing new as Benjamin Pratt, a student from Sierra Leone living in India, once told the BBC that many African immigrants are victims of racism and prejudice in India warranting BBC journalists Christian Parkinson and Vikas Pandey to join Benjamin on the streets of Delhi to find out. However, the journey ended up in a small village in the western state of Gujarat, where they discovered a surprising and little-known culture alive and well.

One would have the distracted journey interpreted as a tactical maneuver to circumvent the hideous monster that is Indian’s racism. It should however be noted that the world, Nigeria and many other African countries, have always opened their doors wide to the hospitable habitation of all Indians, who from experience goes to such countries to continue, albeit subtly and with careful calculations, their racist dispositions.

A time may come, as an eventuality, when the people of these countries will have to say no, not any more, to the suffering, the injustices, the prejudice and general ill-treatment of their people while they (the Indians) act like gods in other people’s countries.

‘Lakunle Jaiyesimi ( @lakunlescrews

14 thoughts on “The State Of Racism In India Today: How Nigerians & Africans Are Hated Without A Cause

  1. Enlightment is the problem. Some folks from other side are deeply entrenched in colonial literature about black people. Christian doctrine is the only way out for humanity; Jesus spent years preaching love and its components,still the lost ones are hell-bent to satisfy the wishes of their father (lucifer). There are good and bad people in every race, before God, we are just a group of pathetic creature that can only survive mainly in contiguity of sins.

  2. If we cut both arms of our treasury looters and develop Africa, we will have our own developed Africa and get some respect. the only reason the White people are getting respect is because everybody knows they are comfortable. Its a CLASS thing first before it becomes racism. The power of a racist person comes from them believing they are better than you. So since Africa is the poorest continent,it is easy to look down ob black folks. SIMPLE!

  3. The reason why this so called “oyinbo” hates we black is bcos they see us as poor people..

  4. @Dan, you hit the mark exactly where I was aiming. No one can ever poke racist fun to a man who is better than he. Coveteousness and greed on the part of African leaders have hitherto kept the continent from reaching to the heights. Nigeria’s case is even heart-breaking. Dubai that everybody now rushes to as a matter of class was nothing as at 1989/90. They had only one hotel in the whole of the city as at then. But today…(No need telling us what we already know)

    UAE is a third-world country, but I don’t think that any of her citizens would face racial abuse anywhere in the world, be it Europe or North America. But Nigerians? We caused ourselves this pains we feel today. I must say, however, how surprised I am that of all people, Indians would be the once to descriminate agianst us, considering what abject poverty and chronic diseases are still doing to them today. The deplorable condition of their rural settlements is one of the worst in the world. A poor kid from the thickest slums in Nigeria may not even find it comfortable there. So what makes those Indians feel proud about their urbanised places to segregate other people?

    • UR A HERBIVORE. And the right of a herbivore is to be eaten and chased, as mostly allows the movements of his life to be guided by his fears, do u not see ur selves in that description southern nigerians, i believe that africa has developed this personality as a result of chooisng not to fight and instead running, in most situation that calls for him to fight, as we r wuietely shying away from the obvious truth that arabs are taking over our continent via islam, but if u say that to any group of self respecting african herbivores, ull be sternly silenced lest u shud risk and further injury from the arabs, i blame lack of coordinated starategies against most of our problems.

  5. Nigerians and Africans are the cause of the hatred. If they learn how to stay in their country/continent and develop it, other people from other country/continent will not only love Nigerians and Africans but will also love to reside in Nigeria and even fight to have Nigeria Green Card.

  6. I see dis as illiteracy and there lack of exposure as they claim to be…
    Are they in any sense reflecting dat there is no any indian in nigeria or other african countries? Dey shouldn’t just complain d moment dsame hand is given to dem in other pples country..
    They hv just showed hw inferior and weak they are by dis discriminating behaviour

  7. Nigerians are hated all over the world because of their bad attitude. Some Nigerians are heartless. A boy I trusted to do a job for me took my money as it entered his account and ran away. I put in his account money for the job and another gift to him to say thank you. Yet he treated me in that way. So that alone make the world to hate Nigerians.

    If Nigerians wants to be loved by the world let them change their ways and attitude. I am a Nigeria and dislike the way our Nigerian behave. May God deliver our heartless people.

    • nigerian behavior is unreconciliable that much stands to be factual. but who the heck hires a nigerian ?! they are tiffs**

  8. There are two major conflicts and one minor…. all is silently happening and i see no end.

    1. World Elite( lead by White with admission of few dark skin/black)
    2. Racial War.
    3. Religious War.

  9. Nigerians are the most feared in the world……who still be India? Na wa for this our country, common India

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