What is the political relationship between India and Britian?
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Political relations between India and Britain have been very warm since India gained independence in (I think) 1947. Although Britain was the colonizing power, her attitude to India was always different from that towards African colonies for example, and certain aspects of British life were enthusiastically adopted by India, most notably cricket perhaps but also language, legal and political structures, railways and even - not sure this was such a good thing, mind you - a certain style of bureaucracy. And of course Britain borrowed from India too. Some have argued that Britain and India suited each other because they both had a quite rigid class or caste social structure and I believe there is truth in this. For whatever reason, India did not seem to resent Britain as much as other colonies and this mutual good feeling remained following independence. Considerable immigration to Britain from India also contributed and the result is that today the political relationship is as strong for Britain as with any other country except the US.
I agree with much of what the previous post articulated. I think that there still exists some level of racism in England towards Indians. This can be seen in persistent attitudes towards Indians and the lack of Indian representation in the highest of powerful positions in England. This is not something that only England possesses, and certainly is better than the recent actions in Australia towards Indian students and better than events in Austria and Germany where there have been outward acts that demonstrate intolerance towards Indians. England is certainly better than most, but there still is an undercurrent of difficulty in dealing with a large Indian population that was once colonized.
Everything I have seen and read about the Indian population in Great Britain (and it certainly isn't comprehensive) does suggest that Indian immigrants exist generally as second-class members of society, often denied opportunities enjoyed by others. This view may or may not be accurate or fair, especially in its generalization, but it seems to be the common perception, at least.
This leads me to some questions. In historical terms, were American immigrants assimilated into the mainstream more quickly if they were not of a different race? For instance, did Irish and German immigrants overcome initial social prejudice more quickly than Chinese and Japanese immigrants? Is race the greatest barrier that immigrants in any country must overcome? And given England's long history of fixed class distinctions, will Indian immigrants ever be accepted into the mainstream of British society?
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