The Indian Community in Myanmar

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  1. ppgj

    ppgj Senior Member Senior Member

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    The Indian Community in Myanmar

    Paper no. 352 26-Nov-2009

    The Indian Community in Myanmar

    Guest Column by Dr. V. Suryanarayan

    The Indian Community in Myanmar is one of those forgotten children of Mother India. The tragic status of the community has not been sufficiently brought to light by any institution in India..

    The Singhvi Committee Report:

    According to the Singhvi Committee Report, the total Indian population in Myanmar is estimated to be 2.9 million, of which 2,500,00 are People of Indian Origin (PIO), 2,000 are Indian citizens, and 400,000 are stateless.1 Regarding the Stateless category, it must be mentioned that all of them are born in Myanmar, they belong to the third or fourth generation. But since they do not have any “documents to prove their citizenship under the Burmese citizenship law of 1982” they are deemed to be “stateless.”2 As T. P. Sreenivasan, former Indian Ambassador to Myanmar has pointed out “they had no rights either in the land of their origin or in their land of adoption, and neither the two governments seemed concerned.”3 In fact, of the Indian diaspora, Myanmar has the largest number of “stateless” people.

    History:

    Historically, like other parts of Southeast Asia, Burma came under the spell of Indian cultural influences. Thanks to priests, princes, poets, and artists, the Indian culture spread into Burma in a big way; the spread of Buddhism directly from India and indirectly through Ceylon profoundly influenced all aspects of Burmese life.

    If one leaves aside this glorious chapter in the history of India, the contacts with the outside world, especially during the colonial period, had been accompanied by sorrow, misery, and impoverishment. Imperialist domination made India the pivot of the British Empire and the vast reservoir of manpower were exploited to serve the colonial interests of Britain. Large armies of labourers, soldiers, clerks, and traders migrated to different parts of the Empire to serve the politico-economic interests of Britain. Few money lenders and educated people also went to those countries on their own initiative.

    Indigenous and Alien Minorities

    An important clue to the understanding of modern Burmese history is to keep in mind the demographic and ethnic diversity in the country. With more than 100 ethnic groups, languages, and dialects, no other country in Southeast Asia displays such a diversity. It is a veritable kaleidoscope. Historically Burma had been the buffer among the neighbouring countries of China, India, and Thailand.

    More than 2,000 years of cultural interaction among various races and ethnic groups has resulted in the development of diverse ethnic settlements, residing both in the mountainous frontier zones and lowland plains. Burma has a population of 56 million, the majority Burman number nearly two-thirds. The largest minorities are Shan – 9 per cent and Karen – 7 per cent. Other indigenous minority groups include Mon, Rakhine, Chin, Kachin, Kayan, Danu, Akha, Kokang, Lahu, Rohingyia, Tavoyan, and Wa peoples. They constitute nearly 5 per cent of the population.

    Until the annexation of Burma as an integral part of the Indian Empire in 1886, the country had never existed as a unified State. What is more, the British permitted many indigenous groups living in the frontier areas to have their own administrative set up. It was only after independence that the Government made attempts to integrate the various ethnic groups into one nation. The nation-building experiment was based on the language, culture, and religion of the majority Burmans. This policy was resisted by the minority groups, many of them belonging to the Christian faith. The post-independence history of Burma is full of struggles by the minority groups for autonomy and self-determination.

    The Chinese and the Indians who migrated to Burma under the protective umbrella of the British rule are considered to be alien minorities, unlike the ethnic groups mentioned before, who are indigenous minorities. It may also be pointed out that the history of Myanmar is riddled with two types of struggles, one fight against the military junta for restoration of democracy and the struggle by the minorities for autonomy and self-determination. The problems of the alien minority groups – Indians and the Chinese – for citizenship and fair treatment have not attracted the attention that they richly deserve.

    The Chinese have one advantage, compared to the Indians, though their number is less than that of the Indians, they have far greater economic clout and they own a disproportionate share of the Burmese economy. The good relations between the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the military junta have also led to a situation where their problems are attended to with greater sensitivity by the military rulers. According to media reports, the number of Chinese has been increasing in the country with many of them settling down in the Burmese side of the Sino-Burma border.

    Indians not Homogenous

    The geographical contiguity, with India sharing both land and maritime boundaries with Burma, facilitated large-scale migration of Indians into Burma. Though the term Indians encompassed all sections of people who migrated from British India – which today consists of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Nepal – the Indians were not a homogenous group. In terms of religion, there were Hindus, Moslems, Sikhs, and Christians. In terms of language, there were Bengalis, Hindi-speaking people from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, Tamil-, Telugu-, and Malayalam-speaking people from the former Madras Presidency and Punjabi-speaking people from Punjab. They belonged to various caste groups and were also economically stratified, the rich Chettiars, the poor Tamils, and Hindi-speaking people, and the English educated middle classes from all parts of the country.

    What must be remembered is that the Burmese perception of Indians depended upon which strata of society various Indian groups occupied in the Burmese society. The Burmese had contempt for the poor Indians, who monopolised jobs such as scavenging, rickshaw pulling, and other menial jobs, which the Burmans themselves were reluctant to do. They hated the Chettiars, who lent money at exorbitant rates and gradually became absentee landlords in Lower Burma.

    Social tensions began to build up when the Moslems from Bengal began to marry Burmese women, exploiting the simple traditions of the Burmese. Since Islamic law permitted polygamy, intermarriages became a common practice among the Indian Moslems. What added fuel to the fire was the fact that many of them deserted their wives when they returned to their native villages. The educated Indians, who became doctors, lawyers, teachers, and political leaders, were an object of envy and admiration and there was friendly interaction between the Indian and Burmese intelligentsia. The Burmese nationalist leaders had great admiration for leaders like Gandhiji and Nehru and the educated Indian middle classes represented the best of Indian nationalist traditions.

    Indian Influx into Burma

    Condemned and despised in their native villages, whether in Bengal, Bihar, United Provinces, and Madras Presidency, the Indian working classes braved the seas, provided the much needed labour to clear the swamps in Lower Burma and malaria-infested jungles and in that process also became the most exploited and vulnerable section of the Indian population. The laissez-faire policies of the British Raj and the xenophobic and ultra-nationalist policies of the governments in independent Burma have contributed to this unprecedented saga of human misery.

    As the nationalist movement in Burma began to gather momentum, it also took an anti-Indian dimension. The alienation of vast tracts of agricultural land to Indian Chettiars, the Burmese entry into the labour markets following the depression of the 1930s, which was hitherto an exclusive Indian domain; the opening of the University of Rangoon and consequent turning out of Burmese graduates searching for clerical jobs – all these provided the fertilizer for the growth of anti-Indian sentiments. There were large scale riots against the Indians in the 1930s, due to social, economic, and cultural reasons. The Burmese nationalists wanted freedom not only from the British political domination but they were also equally keen to throw out the yoke of Indian economic stranglehold.

    Japanese Occupation

    The period of Japanese Occupation, 1942–45, was the darkest period in the history of the Indian community in Burma. The war entirely destroyed the pre-war economy and the commanding position which the Indian community enjoyed. Some Chettiars saw the writing on the wall and even before the war began they repatriated their vast wealth from the country. The majority of Indians suffered untold misery and hardship. Nearly 500,000 Indians left the country and out of these nearly half of them died on the way. Those who were left in Rangoon joined the Indian National Army in large numbers. At a later period, they also supported the Burmese demand for independence.

    Introduction Of Citizenship Rules and Land Reforms

    The independent Government of Burma introduced large number of progressive measures to give the land back to the tiller. These measures naturally hit the interests of Chettiars very badly. The Standard Rent Act, Tenancy Disposal Act, Agricultural Debt Relief Act, Land Nationalisation Act, Agricultural Bank Act, and Burma Foreigners Act – all these had the cumulative effect of depriving the Chettiars of their enormous wealth. No one, with a tinge of social conscience, could protest against these progressive measures. At the same time, the compensation paid to the landlords was meagre; what is more, the Chettiars found it difficult to repatriate their money into India due to stringent foreign exchange restrictions.

    When the new Constitution was promulgated, it was stipulated that those who had been in continuous residence in Burma for eight out of the past ten years immediately preceding war years were eligible for citizenship. But the immediate prospects of stability in the country were so uncertain that most Indians preferred to sit on the fence and did not apply for citizenship

    Adding to the political uncertainty was the assassination of Aung San, who was generally considered to be a great friend of India and the Indian community. Only 400,000 applications were received for citizenship and out of these only 10,000 were granted Burmese citizenship. The rest were treated as aliens. When the Government introduced Burmanisation of public services in the 1950s large number of Indians employed in the railways, water transport, customs, post and telegraph, and public works and other departments were retrenched. In the 1960s under the Burmese Socialist Programme, the government even nationalized petty trade. These measures sounded the death knell of the poorer sections of the Indian community in Burma. To add insult to injury, they were not even allowed to bring back their savings to India. Women were not even allowed to take back their Mangalyasutra. The repatriates also complained of demonetization of currency notes, expropriation of properties, confiscation of valuables, and unimaginable humiliations. According to the Policy Note issued by the Government of Tamil Nadu, from June 1963 onwards, 1,44,353 Burmese repatriates have returned to India.4 What is more tragic, even after the lapse of forty-five years, the compensations due to these people have not been settled.

    Annadurai’s Initiative to Settle Compensation

    C.N. Annadurai, who became the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu when the DMK was voted to power in the 1967 elections, was very concerned about the developments in Burma and was keen to resolve the issue of compensation expeditiously. In a conversation with the author, Thomas Abraham, then Minister Counsellor in the Indian Embassy in Rangoon, recalled his meeting with Annadurai in the Chief Minister’s residence in Mambalam. The meeting was arranged through the good offices of common friends. After discussing the pros and cons of the matter, Annadurai wrote a letter to the central government suggesting that India should enter into a long term agreement with Burma for the import of rice and the compensation due to Burmese repatriates could be adjusted in the proposed deal. It may be recalled that during 1967 India was facing an acute crisis in food grains. On his return to Rangoon, Thomas Abraham also made a similar proposal to the Ministry of External Affairs. It is unfortunate, but true, that these concrete proposals did not elicit any favourable response from New Delhi

    New Delhi’s Hands off Policy Towards The Indian Community in Myanmar

    The author had discussions with several Indian diplomats based in Rangoon as to why the issue of the status of the “stateless people” of Indian origin in Myanmar never figured in the bilateral discussions between the two countries. Ambassador Parthsarathy, who along with J.N. Dixit, played a big role in re-establishing cordial relations with the military junta, informed the author that after establishing good rapport with the military junta, he wanted to take up the question of stateless people and arrive at an amicable solution.

    Attempts made by Ambassador T.P. Sreenivasan to kindle interest in the subject turned out to be a futile exercise. In his recently published memoirs, Words, Words, Words: Adventures in Indian Diplomacy, T.P. Sreenivasan has described the consequences of New Delhi’s “hands off policy” with regard to the Indian community in Myanmar. Though the Ne Win government expelled the Indian petty traders, the authorities wanted the Indian farmers to stay back to provide continuity in rice cultivation. When Sreenivasan visited them, he found the farmers had become “totally impoverished.” Their quality of life was “extremely poor.” Ironically they did not have even “rice to eat” as the procurement authorities “lifted their produce wholly.” They had to consume low-quality rice, which the State did not want to procure for export.5

    Future of Indian Community in Myanmar

    Two contrasting views about the prospects of the Indian community in Myanmar are given below, one by a Burmese bureaucrat and the other from the Singhvi Committee Report. Thet Lwin, who is a member of the Myanmar Academy of Arts and Science, Ministry of Education, Government of Myanmar, in a recent essay on Indians in Myanmar has presented an optimistic view. To quote Thet Lwin, “Indian presence in Burma is a historical legacy; a section of Myanmar’s Indian community is engaged in business while a majority is in agriculture or in menial labour … The younger generation through education is moving fast towards integration into the mainstream Myanmar society. The rise of India has a profound impact on the image-building attempts of overseas Indians. For Myanmar Buddhists, India is the place for pilgrimage, and for those of Indian stock, it is the country of their forefathers. Culture and religious links could be strengthened by promoting tourism.”6

    Unlike the above statement, which is couched in the best diplomatic parlance, but which hides the actual reality, the comments made in the Singhvi Committee Report reflects the reality. To quote the Singhvi Committee Report, the Indians are “fairly impoverished in Myanmar,” the more prosperous elements having left, following waves of nationalization and other measures which hurt their livelihood. The educational scene is pathetic. At one time, the faculty and alumni of the University of Rangoon comprised mainly of Indians. Today, “there are hardly any Indian students in the Universities,” and results in a virtual extinction of a professional class. The main reason was that “between 1964 and 1988, Indians were denied admission to the Universities and professional courses.”7

    Conclusion

    In early January 2010, the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas will be celebrated with great pomp and splendour. The ministers of the Central Government, the concerned government officials, and the assembled delegates will harp on the necessity to speed up the administrative procedures relating to Overseas Indian citizenship. In June 2010, the DMK government in Tamil Nadu will be organizing another equally important conference in Coimbatore on Tamil as a classical language. True to Dravidian traditions, Chief Minister Karunanidhi and his loyal lieutenants will sing paeans of praise about the greatness of Tamil Language and how Tamil culture has spread and enriched the traditions of several countries in the world. Will the delegates in these two conferences have the time to discuss about the abject living conditions of the Indian community in Myanmar, many of them Tamil-speaking people of Indian Origin? Unlikely, because New Delhi and Tamil Nadu are more keen to provide legitimacy to the authoritarian government in Myanmar. Naturally they will not like to focus on embarrassing issues, which impinge upon bilateral relations such as the plight of the unfortunate children of Mother India.

    (Dr. V. Suryanarayan is Senior Professor (Retd), Centre for South and Southeast Asian Studies, University of Madras. He can be reached at e-mail [email protected])



    NOTES

    1. Singhvi Committee Report, pp. xvii–xx.

    2. T.P. Sreenivasan, Words, Words, Words: Adventures in Indian Diplomacy (New Delhi: Pearson Longman, 2008), p. 198.

    3. Ibid.

    4. Ibid.

    5. Sreenivasan, Words, Words, Words, pp. 195–202.

    6. Thet Lwin, “Indians in Myanmar,” K. Kesavapani, A. Mani, and P. Ramasamy, Eds., Rising India and Indian Communities in East Asia (Singapore: ISEAS, 2008), pp. 485–98.

    7. Singhvi Committee Report, pp. 259–62.
     
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  3. ppgj

    ppgj Senior Member Senior Member

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    Tamils of Indian Origin in Myanmar (Burma)

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    Tamils of Indian Origin in Myanmar
    Legacy of British colonial policy

    by Mala Kadar, RN, MPH, June 1, 2008

    Ancient Tamil poetry exhorts that one should ‘cross the seven seas to seek fortune,’ and so it comes as no surprise to find a large presence of Tamils in Yangon (Rangoon) in Myanmar, formerly Burma.

    It was startling to suddenly come across this young Tamil woman in a busy market in Yangon (Rangoon) - seated under hut and making ‘dosa’ - Indian pancakes. She beckoned to me to try one. So began a friendship with a member of the third generation of Tamis who had come to Myanmar during the time of the British Empire to seek their fortune on one of the most noted British ventures - tea and sugar cane cultivation. That was the time when the ‘sun never set on the British Empire’ and big business were hungry for skilled, hard-working labor. India could always supply the growing demand.

    Ancient Tamil poetry exhorts that one should ‘cross the seven seas to seek fortune,’ and so it comes as no surprise to find a large presence of Tamils in Yangon (Rangoon).

    This writer had been selected to follow a course in basic Buddhism in the International Theravada Buddhist Missionary University of Myanmar in 2007. One of the earliest encounters was with the Tamil and Hindustani-speaking people who were living in the villages close by to the University. The Indians who had been brought to Burma by the British Raj have acculturated, but are disenfranchised. Inevitably, women and children carry the brunt of this political and economic deprivation. Myanmar – a country the roughly the size of Texas - has been governed by the military for almost 40 years and generations have no concept of democracy. Buddhism predominates the way of thinking and acting in the daily life of 90% of the population. The Hindus have incorporated Lord Buddha into the pantheon of Hindu gods and it is not unusual to see Burmese throng the Hindu temples seeking the blessings of the Gods, especially the poor women and children.

    The Public Health system in Myanmar is very marginal and access to health care can be a challenge for those with limited income. According to the United Nations, Myanmar’s population is 57.6 million (IMF estimate 2007); no official census has been taken since 1983. The infant mortality rate is 75 deaths/1,000 live births (UNDP 2005 estimate) and Life expectancy is 60.8 yrs. (males: 57.6 yrs. and females: 64.2 yrs.) (UNDP 2005 estimate). This became very evident when many of the Tamil as well as Myanmar women would communicate that they have lost their husbands or some immediate family members at a very young age. Dying from Dengue, Malaria, Typhoid, Hepatitis and gastro-intestinal diseases is very common.

    The young Tamil vendor much to my surprise was at her final trimester of pregnancy, but malnourished with poor pre-natal care. She shyly explained that her income along with the husband’s was not enough, so only a glass of fresh ‘milk’ was the extra that they could afford. Her daily diet consisted mainly of starch – rice or bread - and one or two vegetables with a small piece of river fish. She would attend a pre-natal clinic in the downtown Yangon, where she would be among the many hundreds who would sit the whole day to be examined by one of the poorly paid medical doctors. She had not been made aware that she was pregnant with twins and was shocked when she had to give birth in a premature delivery with the help of a local mid-wife. She sent word for me and it was extremely painful to observe the crushing poverty and uncertainty surrounding this malnourished young woman and her premature set of twin daughters. The fearful rainy season was at its peak and the little hut could not protect this young family from air and water-borne disease. Inevitably one infant’s life was claimed - ‘survival of the fittest’.

    It was not long before many of the villagers wanted me to help them seek care for the myriad of health problems. The public health structure that had been left by the departing British was functioning, but needed support to care for the expanding young population. Yangon city and its outskirts could not cope with the ferocious rains that made the drainage sewers overflow, leaving thick, stagnant, polluted water that become a breeding ground for mosquitoes etc.

    I observed an indifference to the environment - a passive acceptance of what surrounds the villagers. There was no ‘will’ to overcome the obstacles - clear away the debris, wash the drain or the pavement. Chewing betel – betel leaf with Arica nut, pinch of tobacco and calcium chloride - was a national habit. People spat out the betel juice at random and ‘red spots of spittle dotted the pavement. I became deft at dodging ‘betel spit’ that would ‘shoot’ out from the buses or cars while passing! A virtual red spat! There is no talk about cancer or promotion to curtail this national public health menace. Where would one start? Explain to a poor woman that betel causes oral pharyngeal cancer when it is well known that, by chewing this leaf and nut, hunger pangs are kept at bay? To the wealthy I suggested replacing the betel with ‘chewing gum,’ as it was available at a price - the only pragmatic intervention to slow down the habit.

    The descendents of the Indians who have now accepted Myanmar as their adopted land continue to maintain their culture and tradition. The women would wear the traditional ‘saris’ to the temple and celebrate important festivals. I was privileged to participate in one such celebration and was astounded to observe the fervor and devotion exhibited. It was explained that, post-independence, the Burmese government passed a series of legislations that created an exodus of the immigrants who had settled in Burma during the time of the British. Their businesses had been nationalized and laws passed curtailing their rights to own lands, etc. So began the economic flight and followed by professionals seeking fresh pastures. Some of the Tamils have established businesses and continue to live and accepted life in Burma as they have no links with India. The very poor who were left behind on the plantations were severely economically deprived - lacking good education or skills, they literally eke out a living. They have no citizenship papers as well because it was explained to me that hurdles have been placed in the application process and corruption has made it even more beyond their reach. In Sri Lanka, too, disenfranchisement of the minority has taken place in stages as the majority has not been ready to accept the representation of the minority, in spite of the tremendous economic contribution that Tamils brought by the British make towards the export industry – tea.
    Tamil woman selling fried food by the roadside

    Unlike in Sri Lanka where Theravada Buddhsim has mushroomed into a militant Buddhism with monks advocating war, Burmese monks continue to be the backbone of the community by emphasizing meditation, charity and compassion. Most monks live a very acetic lifestyle and are very visible on their daily rounds with their ‘alms bowl’. It is considered a privilege for a Buddhist family to have at least one male child ordained as a monk even for a limited period.

    Tamil woman selling fried food by the roadside in Yangon 2007

    My spoken Myanmar language gradually picked up and I was able to converse with the local women and men who were eager to share their life stories. They were the most courteous, kind and gentle people and observation of the ‘Way of Life’ as advocated by Lord Buddha was observed. There were neither thieves nor hooligans, or lewd behavior, but one of respect and reverence. This was truly refreshing as this writer’s former home country was Sri Lanka where Buddhism has promoted hatred, violence and bitterness among the races. The Tamils and Hindustanis living in Burma would have words of praise with no experience of any negative emotions directed against them or instigated by the government, thus far. However, unlike Mahayana Buddhism, Theravada (Way of the Elders) has fostered a rigid, inflexible way of thinking. The schism took place after the demise of Lord Buddha, when Theravadins would insist on a rigorous, fundamental interpretation of Buddha’s teachings as opposed to the Mahayanists more ‘pragmatic’ approach that blended with the culture of the land in which it took root - Tibet, China, Japan, Vietnam. Thus, we can witness the impasse with the military in Myanmar even in a moment of such calamity - negotiate and compromise is not fostered or cultivated in the way of thought of Theravada Buddhism.

    Celebration at the Hindu Temple.

    The lack of planning by the military government for the future of the education system is also having its dire results, and unemployment is rampant. The mismanagement of public resources - social grants, education, water, housing and electricity provision are visible in the quality of the life of the people. The youth simply loiter around or leave for other neighboring countries seeking their fortune. Young boys and girls work as ‘tea boys and girls’, domestic help and other labor-intensive chores that require working well into the night.

    A group of Tamil women who had come to the Temple.

    The villagers became very disheartened when the time came for my departure. My knowledge in health care and presence had made some difference in their lives and someone had listened to their anxieties about the future. The women would tell me about their mentally ill children or lack of support to feed them and the battle to eke out an existence. Even while facing such crushing hardship they would smile and be so courteous and warm. Their personality too reflected tranquility even in the midst of such abject poverty. It was often requested by many mothers, “take my son with you’ as the daughters can always toil as domestic labor in wayside cafes or hotels. It was a depressive experience to observe young Tamil girls in rags toiling in the back drop while the fairer skinned Burmese would be the ‘servers’. Many Tamil women would insist that I apply Sandalwood paste to prevent sun burn and becoming ‘darker’.

    A hotel managed by Tamil men

    The hurricane and devastation that has happened recently in the lower Myanmar would bring more severe hardship to these poverty stricken people. Lord Buddha promoted an ‘enlightened’ way of thought and moderation in lifestyle but the leadership of Burma is very rigid and inflexible in their governance. Those who have ‘power’ keep the masses under a tight ‘leash’ all the while enjoying life to the full with creature comforts- it was ‘Animal Farm’ by George Orwell complete with ‘Horatio’ the ‘Dictatorial General’. Coincidentally, George Orwell had served as a young Civil Servant in Burma and had written brilliant observations of this land and its people. My gratitude remains with the Burmese people- they took me into their homes, showed kindness and taught me Lord Buddha’s word of Charity, compassion and meditation can bring peace of mind even when odds are against you.

    Hindustani and Tamil men who had served in the British government service- now retired.

    Two young boys working as ‘domestic servants’- they were accompanying the employer to market

    A busy market scene in the village.

    Mahayana nuns who studied with this writer

    The writer with friends in front of the International Theravada Buddhist Missionary University of Myanmar.
     
  4. ppgj

    ppgj Senior Member Senior Member

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  5. m manoharan

    m manoharan New Member

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    very interesting and heart warming report about left out indians in myanmar. Govt. of India, should take care to promote Myanmar into a democratic country,. Burmese are traditionally warm hearted , decent and honest people. They have great pride., but, not like Chinese. Their pride should be respected by us.
     
  6. amoy

    amoy Senior Member Senior Member

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    how can u tell Hindustani or Tamil? They look all the same
     
  7. Iamanidiot

    Iamanidiot Elite Member Elite Member

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    My forefathers made a fortune by trading virignia Tobacco grown in the godavari lankalu and rice from Kakinada port to Rangoon(till 1940's)including my paternal grandpa.They used to comeback with Burmese teak,moolah and emeralds and timber they did this for nearly 200-250(1750-onwards) years until independence.During the period of war they British used to ask them send nallamandhu to get the Japanses on dope.On the return ships they used to have escapeed usually Indians,Chinese and ocassionally europeans .The Chinese used to go to Calcutta and most of the families who wanted to escape used to Pledge some valuables with my great grandfather.My paternal ancestral house is full of artifacts from those trades
     
  8. Iamanidiot

    Iamanidiot Elite Member Elite Member

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    The Burma bazaar in Chennai was established to accomadate Tamilian refugees from Burma
     
  9. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Many of them were Telugu & Tamil Chettiars who are known for their business acumen..
     
  10. trackwhack

    trackwhack Tihar Jail Banned

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    How can you tell one Chinese from another, you all look the same!
     
  11. indian_sukhoi

    indian_sukhoi Regular Member

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    Not just Tamilians(Indians) but also the other minorites suffering from lot of problems.
     
  12. SADAKHUSH

    SADAKHUSH Senior Member Senior Member

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    This is very good response to ignorant person. Thank you. I reserve this kind of complement for few chosen ones. This is called hit them where it hurts most.
     
  13. Kris Val

    Kris Val New Member

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    Us Indians gave them culture, math, language and discipline in life. Same with the middle east who in turn civilized the western barbarians. In return we face nothing but discrimination. There is a general lack of respect amongst Indians that hurts us the most in the long run. Unless the south India wakes up and takes a very serious and aggressive role in military this persecution will continue unabated. In the mean time all Indians must continuously assess their role and reach in the societies they live in. Just going about their life without these perceptions will result in grave consequences.
     

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