Poor Gordon

Why did it have to happen when he was in India?

Gordon Brown, Britain’s would-be prime minister, must be cursing his luck. Here he is minding his own business and doing an official trip to India—smile, have photograph taken, give speech, that kind of stuff—and along comes this freakish controversy involving an Indian actress, a British television show and racism. Right out of GreatBong, it would appear. But sadly for Brown, it’s also true.

And if public outrage at home and in India were not enough, the Indian government—which can remain silent when up to a hundred of its Muslim citizens (non-celebrities, of course) are arrested for praying illegally in Saudi Arabia—pitched in even as Gordon Brown was meeting software engineers in Bangalore. At least two ministers and one foreign office spokesman have found it necessary to remind the British government to follow its own laws. The Indian government has promised to ‘take appropriate measures’. So it should. One of those measures should be not to make this into a big issue.

Update: GreatBong sends it to the cleaners.

10 thoughts on “Poor Gordon”

  1. Not only are our priorities askew, but we (Indians) should be the last people shouting foul.
    Esp, In defense of a bollywood starlet.

  2. Why is the indian government protesting??? The English government has no editorial control over the program so what good does it do. We are looking like fools in this controversy and in my mind is no different than Danish ambassadors in ME getting a dressing down from their host goverments in the cartoon controversy.

    Our netas need a whole god damn dose of common sense injected up their posteriors.

  3. Racist attacks against Indians from uneducated deprived whites is not unusual See Racists attack Indian nurses in UK.

    The question is whether one should condone bullying in the context of a reality-show…despite all the guests being paid to appear on it – would you allow your bosses to bully you in your workplace?

    Do the producers of the show have responsibilty to check the behaviour of ill-mannered guests?

  4. You guys don’t think UK High commissioner won’t be protesting if British tourists are rough up because they are white in some India city corner? Travel ban, holier than thou attitude from British and other western press is sure to follow.

    Anyway, I am not sure why Shilpa is taking it laying down. After all these guys are dumb British. She needs to get some spine and kick ’em in the ass. I think Aishwarya would know how to handle these guys.

  5. Neither Shilpa Shetty nor anyone else deserves to be abused. Decency is a minimum requirement. But why is the GoI hopping mad this time? Beats me! Shilpa Shetty incidentally kissed the Pakistan flag on a “friendship and peace process visit” to Pakistan a few years ago. Remember that?

  6. Loved the Germaine Greer essay. The woman sure knows how to write a hysterically funny rant.

    I don’t know if it’s our netas, Umrao Jaan. Probably some reporter goes and thrusts his microphone in their faces, asking them their opinion of whatever the latest controversy is. And of course, instead of saying “no comment”, the spokesman talks about taking “appropriate action”. It would be more funny if it wasn’t also a little embarassing.

  7. All of you in the blogosphere writing about India’s political, economical and national interests are doing an awesome job. Your views and analysis on Indian affairs need to be applauded. But I am afraid that these discussions are not having the kind of impact that’s needed to get India moving in the right direction again. A miniscule population reads these blogs and many have no influence in the nation’s policy or strategic framework. Why not join together under a unified umbrella and bring these discussions more mainstream into people’s living rooms through TV and the newspapers. Why let the liberal media hijack India’s inerests day in and day out 24/7.

  8. Anurag,

    I’ve not read it, and I’m wary of hyperbole, but for what it’s worth perhaps there really is an army of Davids.

    In this context, the blogosphere’s first success will be if we can prevent, at the margin, people from watching the idiot box.

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