There is a question mark over the future of a statue of Mahatma Gandhi in Wales following an official review by the Welsh government in Britain’s colonial rule and slave trade history made a list of monuments that require rethinking.
The report released this week, « The Slave Trade and the British Empire: An Audit of Remembrance in Wales, » also lists the wartime remembrance of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Robert Clive for his role in Clive of India The establishment of British colonial power in India is referred to as « persons of interest » in order to move on to a second stage of the review process.
Wales has a bronze sculpture of Gandhi in Cardiff Bay, made in 2017 for the 148th. Birthday of the leader of the Indian national movement was unveiled. On exam, he was placed in Category E by People of Interest « in need of an exam highlighted by activists ». .
« His comment in an 1896 speech that White Hindus and Muslims were demoted to » kaffir levels « suggests that he believed Indians were better than black Africans.
« Historians have held a range of views on his fault, saying it was premature to expect equality in turn-of-the-century South Africa or to identify Gandhi for ignoring the brutality against Africans. « takes note of the audit document.
“Even so, Gandhi’s later leadership in India inspired leaders in Africa, including Nelson Mandela. A statue of Gandhi in Pietermaritzburg was unveiled by Desmond Tutu in 1993, ”he adds.
Gandhi’s inclusion on the list is largely related to some online campaigns against similar sculptures in Leicester and Manchester. However, these campaigns also had widespread counter-campaigns.
“It was very proud that with the generous support of our donors, our city was able to celebrate the life of Bapu who was so inspiring for the creation of modern India and such an example for the rest of the world. Said Peter Soulsby, the Mayor of Leicester, when he pledged to protect the city’s Gandhi statue earlier this year.
Meanwhile, Churchill also falls into Category E, the audit finding that “he was accused of not taking enough action to alleviate the 1943 famine in Bengal through his dislike of Indian independence « . .
« He expressed his belief in the superiority of the » Anglo-Saxon race « and opposed the dismantling of the British Empire by romanticizing its achievements. These were not uncommon attitudes in his Victoria-born generation, ”he adds.
The rating of Robert Clive, after whom a street in Wales is named, falls under Category A or « People who participated in the African slave trade ». .
« The East India Company participated in the slave trade from 1621 to 1843 (their territories were excluded from the Repeal Act of 1833). . Robert Clive began as a junior employee in 1744, commanded military campaigns in India and was promoted to governor general of the company until 1767, ”it says.
The Welsh government scrutiny began this July amid global protests against Black Lives Matter, which included the very public overthrow of the statue of slaver Edward Colston in Bristol, southern England.
“This exam deals with targeted remembrance in the form of statues, street names and building names. Such commemorations in some cases literally or metaphorically put people responsible for slavery and exploitation “on a pedestal”, often without accompanying interpretation, ”explains the report.
« The guilt of more than one of these people for slavery or other abuse can be discussed and interpreted. Some have changed their positions significantly as they delve into issues or when attitudes around them have changed, ”he adds.
The Task and Finish group behind the review indicates that their review should collect information, not provide answers. The results should now move on to a next phase of analyzing the actions required.
Mahatma Gandhi, Wales, Winston Churchill, UK, Atlantic slave trade
World News – UK – Future of Gandhi’s statue in Wales after review of the slave trade
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