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trackwhack

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India as 'cricket and curries'? That won't help win a fighter jet bid | Tristram Hunt | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk

This read will make the numpties in England pounce on this guy and start screaming AID AID AID!!!

India as 'cricket and curries'? That won't help win a fighter jet bid

"What on earth do they know about cricket and curries," was the acerbic response of Tory MP Peter Bone to the news that the French firm Dassault has emerged as the lowest bidder for a $10bn (£6.3bn) contract to supply India jet fighters. And, in one crisp sentence, Bone encapsulated the problem: a lingering British attitude towards India enveloped in the language of colonialism and entitlement, which is buckling any attempt at a modern, co-operative relationship.

Of course, Bone is not the only one. This week the Sun newspaper has been running a campaign demanding Britain ends its aid programme. "Britain can no longer justify sending aid to India," it announced, since "this superpower in the making is treating us like mugs."

All of which led the BBC's Andrew Neil to ask why, if the French had no aid budget for India, it could be in pole position to supply India's air force, while the British Eurofighter bid had been left stranded despite us bunging billions towards New Delhi. Immediately, we were back to the 1980s: "aid for trade", Pergau Dam and Alan Clark signing it all off. Of course, there are all sorts of solid arguments for ending our aid to India, but failing to secure arms deals is not one of them.

Nevertheless, preferred bidder status for Dassault Aviation is a wretched blow for the British defence industry. It is also a humiliating rebuff to David Cameron's ambitions for "an enhanced strategic partnership" with India. Having condemned the previous Labour government for ignoring our relations with New Delhi, shortly after his election the prime minister packed an aeroplane with high-profile businessmen to secure new contracts from the rising Bric power.

There was even talk of having the ex-head of the Confederation of British Industry, Richard Lambert, take the British high commission job. This mercantilist Anglo-Indian strategy all formed part of the government's grander ambition to turn the Foreign and Commonwealth Office into a high-end sales outfit, with ambassadors acting out the role of regional reps.

But this week it came to naught.

Perhaps this is due to a new generation of politicians, policy-makers and businesspeople in Mumbai, Chennai, and Bangalore who can sense a British political class still stuck in the past. In London, there remains a world view that somehow Britain – because of a connection with India stretching back to the Fort St George in 1640s Madras or Job Charnock in 1690s Lal Dighi (soon to become Calcutta) – has an automatic right of access. The fact we laid the railways, nurtured the bureaucracy, even designed the parliament should put us at the front of the queue. Within the Tory party and its press, it is naturally taken that these historic ties of language, culture, and kin give us an "in" above and beyond other middle-rank powers.

But any encounter with modern India instantly dispels such arrogance. Of course, London is nice to visit and an MA from Oxford is a decent degree (after Harvard, Yale, and Columbia), but the terms of trade have changed. First of all, it is Britain that is now in need of Indian investment – as Tata Motors' purchase of Jaguar Land Rover and Tata Steel's takeover of Corus proves most obviously. And, second, today's Indian elite is focused on America; they are vying with China; they are concerned about Afghanistan. What we think, how we act, who we value: these are all third-order questions. :lol:

Where India is interested in Britain is as a business partner – but, crucially, as part of a broader European Union trading bloc. Yet here the colonial mindset of the Conservative party continues. With great gusto and a lot of air miles, our Eurosceptic foreign secretary has left the tarmac to "rebuild" bilateral relations across the world. He has put in sterling work, but the truth is the UK matters much more as part of a European commercial entity rather than on its own. It is through supranational bodies, not from the Foreign Office Locarno room, that our voice is heard.

What is more, the government has so often bungled the soft-power fundamentals in India. First they tried to end the BBC's Hindi programming on the World Service and then they wildly trumpeted our new "closed-door" education policy. Even if the coalition's immigration strategy is the right one, the tone and manner in which it has been advanced has told Indian students they are not welcome in the UK. One of the greatest motors for Anglo-Indian collaboration has been needlessly undermined by a headline-chasing Home Office. In a globalised media world, domestic policy is consumed very differently abroad.

However, we should not get ahead of ourselves. The jets deal with India is not yet dead. The low bid by the French could all be election-year posturing by President Nicolas Sarkozy. But a mature reaction to the negotiation process is paramount. Any more talk of curries and cricket, Rudyard and the Raj, and we can wave goodbye to those valuable BAE jobs.
 
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SpArK

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The response from a charged British crowd and their politicians has been humiliating .

They could have said all to the old India, the new India which I and you belong doesnt deserve these sort of talks.

EFT, even if its given free shouldnt be bought.Let BAE suck big time.
 

Godless-Kafir

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The response from a charged British crowd and their politicians has been humiliating .

They could have said all to the old India, the new India which I and you belong doesnt deserve these sort of talks.

EFT, even if its given free shouldnt be bought.Let BAE suck big time.
Exactly where was these trolls when we bought the BAe trainer and not to mention BAe bared us from some deal stating frustration or some bull shit.

Seriously we should teach the pig a lesson, dam monkeys have no control on their mouth. Typical.
 

debasree

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collonial masters whiped us in past ,now its ours turn :mad2:
 

Oracle

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My take after all the takes: a jet from a single vendor is much better than a conglomerate of countries who are not seeing eye to eye now, due to the eurozone crisis and their economies on the verge of a collapse. What happens if the Eurozone is to break, and say Italy pulls up it's socks? Where do we go for spares then? Ofcourse, Dassault is the L1 bidder and I am pretty sure IAF has chosed the machine with the right specifications, but then other factors needs to be considered.

As far as Britain is concerned, they need to shed their colonial era mentality. India is the second largest investor in Britain after US, and these kinds of hullabaloo does not send the right signals. The author has also highlighted one key point which is the bias Britain has towards non-EU countries when it comes to migration of students for higher education and skilled professionals. In the last 5 years, Britain, even though unnoticed, have been the most vocal country strengthening their protectionist policies. It stared in the last days of the Gordon Brown government, and that policy is being strengthened by the David Cameron led Conservative Party. And excuse me, but India pays the aid back with interest, and a certain amount of that aid goes to NGOs having their roots in UK.

Britian should also do some reality check as if they are in the same league as the US. US did make some noise, none of which is anything as compared to what the British media and politicians alike are spewing. India's relationship towarsd the US is on an upward spiral because of the mutual gains both countries have. What does India gain from Britain even after the second largest investor in Britain? I see nothing.

So, Britain, next time please direct your baseless rants towards your Harlot state Pakistan, for you would be getting it back in the same coin if it is directed at us.
 
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