Tag Archives: New Delhi

India Feature | African Students

Racism and Anti-African Sentiment in India

As Indo-African economic relations have expanded in recent years, so too have social and cultural relations between India and African nations, particularly via the growth of international student populations across the Indian Ocean. For African communities in India, this cultural exchange has come with a price: incidents of anti-African violence in recent years have both threatened the security of India’s largely university-based black communities and strained relations between India and African countries. Beyond targeted persecution, students also recount instances of everyday ignorance and racism, including references to all black Africans as “Nigerians” regardless of national origin, derogatory name-calling by strangers, and accusations of cannibalism, prostitution, and drug trafficking. Over the last few years, several media outlets have featured the experiences of African immigrants in the country, chronicling instances of discrimination, violence, and disruptions in their education.

Read

African victims of racism in India share their stories” (Al Jazeera | May 2017)

African students hospitalized in roving mob attacks in India” (CNN | March 2017)

The photographer giving Africans in India a voice” (CNN | March 2017)

Being African in India: ‘We are seen as demons’” (Al Jazeera | June 2016)

Their Indian horror: Africans recount everyday racism” (The Hindustan Times | October 2014)

Africans decry ‘discrimination’ in India” (Al Jazeera | December 2013)

Connect

Association of African Students in India (AASI)

India News | Women

Female students locked in hostels to avoid harassment during Holi festival in Delhi
  • Two women’s hostels at the University of Delhi were put on lockdown over the Holi holiday out of safety fears.
  • India’s minister for women argued the restrictions were necessary to defend against consequences of “hormonal outbursts.”
  • Women have long reported being sexually assaulted during the festival, but some activists expressed outrage at women’s rather than men’s mobility being targeted as a response.
Read

Holi festival: Delhi women forced into lockdown amid sexual harassment fears” (The Guardian | March 2017)

Delhi University hostels ‘lock up’ girls on Holi” (The Asian Age | March 2017)

Delhi University hostels prohibit women students from playing Holi outside the premises” (International Business Times | March 2017)

(Image Credit: Reuters, via International Business Times)

India Research | Women

Gender-based Harassment in India’s Urban Spaces

A YouGov/Action Aid UK survey recently polled 502 Indian women about their experiences in urban public spaces, finding that nearly four-in-five women have experienced public harassment in cities like New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, and Kolkata. In the aftermath of the brutal gang rape of a woman on a Delhi bus in late 2012, government and civil society campaigns have encouraged women to report violence, although advocates say crimes (particularly domestic violence) continue to be underreported.

79%

Percentage of women reporting having experienced public harassment in cities

46%

Percentage of women reporting public insults and name-calling

39%

Percentage of women reporting having been groped or touched involuntarily

16%

Percentage of women reporting having been drugged

337,922*

Number of reports of violence against women in 2014, including rape, abduction, and molestation

Read:
Almost 80 percent of Indian women face public harassment in cities: survey” (The Thomson Reuters Foundation)
79% of women in India faced public harassment” (The Times of India)
Three in four women experience harassment and violence in UK and global cities” (ActionAid UK)

* According to India’s National Crime Records Bureau

India News | LGBTQ

Inaugural flashmob draws crowds and attention to LGBTQ issues in New Delhi
  • Led by the queer collective Harmless Hugs, around two dozen youth created a flashmob performance in a major New Delhi commercial district in support of sexual and gender minorities.
  • Spending hours over weekends learning choreography, the group focused on using dance and other messaging to communicate acceptance and support of same-sex love and queer identities.
  • The event followed up on similar annual flashmobs organized in Mumbai.

“Through this dance, I hope the message reaches the government that if loving someone is a crime, then the whole world is a criminal.”

Read the full story at the Hindustan Times.

(Image Credit: Arun Sharma/Hindustan Times)

Inaugural International Yoga Day draws millions around the world to celebrate the ancient spiritual practice
  • In India, PM Narendra Modi joined 37,000 in Rajpath in New Delhi for 1.5 hours of asanas.
  • An estimated 200 million from 192 countries took part in events around the world that followed the rising of the sun, including politicians, military units, and other public workers.
  • Despite some pushback from Muslim leaders in the country and the ongoing holy month of Ramadan, India’s events saw many Muslims joining in the festivities.

“It marks a new era of training of human mind for peace and harmony.”

Read the full story at the Times of India.

The U.N.’s safe cities initiative integrates women’s safety into development projects globally
  • The cross-sector “Safe Cities Global Initiative” aims to stem sexual violence and harassment of women in urban spaces through infrastructure and program development.
  • In Delhi, mobile app Safetipin crowdsources safety reviews of public spaces and integrates GPS for personal tracking and security.
  • Projects have sprung up in other cities as well, including Cairo, Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea, and Kigali in Rwanda.

“Unsafe public spaces limit women’s and girl’s life choices. This daily reality limits their freedom to participate in education, work, recreation, and in political life.”

More on this story at the Thomson Reuters Foundation.