07 August 2014

Indian treats Australians as though they're Indians (i.e. with contempt)

Adani is an Indian coal mining company.

It has been given the go-ahead to mine the massive Galilee Basin. Developing the Galilee Basin is an idea that may have merit.

So far, so good.

Australian political activists posted a video on Youtube questioning Adani's environmental record. Fair enough.

Was Adani's reaction to refute the claims made? No.

But 'somebody' set up a website, uploaded that video, and then claimed a copyright violation, prompting Youtube to pull it.

Sneaky little trick. But that's all it was: sneaky, not really clever.

There is a twist to all of this. The founder of Adani is a Gujarati. For what it may be worth, Gujaratis are despised by other Indians for their dishonesty, to disregard impolite epithets and to name the first of many vices that have been conveyed to me by my Indian friends. In my Western know-it-all arrogance I laughed at those quaint prejudices, but now I'm beginning to wonder whether there isn't something to it after all...

I am outraged. Whatever the merits of the claims about Adani's environmental track record (and given what we know about India in general, one can only entertain speculative doubts out of intellectual fairmindedness), one does not do this to Australians or in Australia. For better or for worse it is acceptable to defecate in the street in India: it is not acceptable here. On nationalist grounds alone, Adani must be stripped of its licence to mine in the Galilee Basin. It may treat Indian peasants with contempt, but it may not treat Australians that way.

For this reason, and this reason alone, I am financially supporting GetUp!'s countermeasure.


Update 05/09/2014: Check out this scathing article by the ever-brilliant Michael West on the viability of the project and general shonkiness. Check out this backgrounder too.


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