Debate of Britain’s Colonial legacy and the impact on society today


Sky News speaks to Shashi Tharoor, author of Inglorious Empire: What The British Did To India, about Britain’s Colonial Legacy and how it is interpreted.

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  1. Wow, Tharoor is so articulate and knowledgeable. And he is totally correct; we are not raised and educated to be aware of our criminal history. Churchill is revered as one of the best British prime ministers. Also why must most Sky reporters and many others, interrupt and conduct themselves in such a rude, patronising way

  2. We should end trade with the UK, bleed it to death! Modi disappointed us!
    Indian businesses in the UK should move to Ireland(especially move Landrover Jaguar plants to Ireland, let that 2 lakh+ British employees die of poverty) and we must boycott unilevers, GSKs and BPs here in the country!
    Hope the visa restrictions on immigrants by PM May fuel this change!

  3. Britisher are nothing more than shameless people who will willingly justify looting of billions of pound and killing billions of people .
    everyone have indian blood on their hand

  4. Every single problem in the world today is the direct or indirect result of the rapacious European colonialism.

    The argument that the depredations in India's are all in the past and the current crop of Britishers are not responsible, is laughable because it is so blatantly racist and shows how morally bankrupt the English are. Per this logic, the WWII holocaust of the Jews (others are conveniently forgotten) should not be drilled into the collective consciousness of the world day in and day out by the West as none of the currently living Germans had anything to do with it. And, what was done to India was orders of magnitude worse.

    It is actually worse. Other than the physical exploitation of the 200 years prior to Indian independence, there is no mention of innumerable ancient texts & knowledge systems that were carted off from India in the century prior and which were either directly applied / patented (without acknowledgement) or served as inspiration for many (if not most) of the technological advances during the renaissance in Europe.

    IMO, whether the hypocritical, pitiful, holier-than-thou British acknowledge culpability is not the issue at all (Indians could care less. The real issue is whether this inspires India's so-called educated, upwardly mobile but mentally colonized set to grow some spine, be more proud of their real heritage, and not ape the west or seek its endorsement as a mark of their 'development'.

  5. I'm doing A levels History, the course is very good biut they actually don't teach us jack about Colonial History, there isn't even an option for Colonial History.

  6. Divide and rule policy is what british did to India.
    British tried to break India in princely states and divide India on the basis of religion. They were partly successful to do that but soon Indians realised that they should stick together in order to fight against britishers.
    So dont take the credit for unification. Indians united because of your attrocities and second class treatment on their own land.

  7. I don't say the British people today are responsible for anything. But the sheer audacity to claim that British Empire was somehow good for india pisses me off to no end and what makes people like Mr. Tharoor raise these issues.

  8. Hundred of thousands Indian soldiers died in two world wars, but there is hardly any acknowledgement of their contribution to the war effort. The British look at these people with disdain and the Indians consider them traitors and mercenaries.

  9. Daniel the Spaniel – who designed caste system based on birth? Risley. who created upper and lower castes? Brits, who gave jobs to upper castes only? Brits. Who brought in feudal system who exploited lower castes and took away their assets? the brits "raj"

  10. Wonderful! The apologists are out of the woodworks in full flow defending the glorious colonial legacy of the British Empire where the Brits sang kumbaya with the locals and left after some tea. Nothing bad happened.

  11. If it wasn't for Britiah colonialism Durka Durka there would still be shitting in the street and wiping his arse with a leaf. A bit of gratitude would be appreciated.

  12. During British rule, there were widespread famines in 1769, 1782, 1791, 1837, 1860, 1865, 1868, 1873, 1876, 1888, 1896, 1899, 1905, and 1943. An estimated 55 to 60 million Indians died in these famines. If mass murder were a sport, this would be a bigger score than Hitler, Stalin, and Pol Pot put together.

  13. The main problem with this argument is his assumption of India upon the arrival of the East India Company as 'The richest country in the world'. India wasn't a country in any sense of the word throughout Britain's time in India. This is why Britain was able to exploit India in the first place. It was a vast collection of states containing a variety of languages, cultures, religions and competing interests that the British inserted themselves into. One of the main reasons the Sepoy Rebellion in the 1857 failed is because there was no real concept of Indian nationhood and one part of India saw themselves as distinct culturally to other parts.

    Britain could never have succeeded in ruling over such a vast number of people with such little manpower had a concept of Indian nationhood been present. China is the greatest example of this. China was just as rich in resources as India and Britain did use its superior technology to force trade concessions but it could never realistically take over China in the same way it did India due to its tradition of being a unified state.

    I'm in no way detracting from the many negatives of British rule in India that he pointed out, by the way, I'm simply saying we need to understand the situation as it was at the time. The painful truth I'm afraid is that India is only 'united' in part now because Britain forced this unity through the Raj.

    ~ Doing a PhD on the East India Company and the Indian textile industry

  14. Britain was the best at it, we had the biggest army.
    Besides, We are not morally responsible for the bad practices of people generations ago.
    British colonialism made the world a better place.

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