|
|
|
|
|
6th Zulqada 1435 | Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014
NRIs Corner

Indian-origin mayor in South Africa faces racist slur

Wednesday, 8 May 2013
Comments(0)
May 08:

Durban, May 8 (IANS) The Indian-origin mayor of a South African town has said that he would claim damages from an officer for subjecting him to a racism slur.

Afzul Rehman, the mayor of Newcastle in South Africa's KwaZulu-Natal province, has alleged that the officer in the town's Road Transport Inspectorate (RTI) had called him a 'Gupta' in reference to a recent controversy-ridden wedding in an India-origin family in the country who go by the surname of Gupta, according to local media.

Rehman said the officer also told him to return to India if he was offended.

The wedding in the influential politically-connected Gupta family earlier this month had been thrust into controversy after a chartered plane carrying guests from India for the event landed at an air force base at Waterkloof near Pretoria without anyone knowing who gave the permission.

There were also reports that the guests were taken from the air base to the wedding venue in Sun City in a cavalcade of blue-lighted cars and that the hosts only wanted white staff to attend to the guests.

The incident involving Rehman occurred May 3, the last day of the four-day wedding, when it was in the national headlines for all the wrong reasons.

According to the mayor, he had gone to the RTI office to renew his driving licence when the officer accosted him and said: "Hey Gupta, what are you doing here?"

Initially, Rehman did not reply and smiled, but the officer went to a nearby room and continued to make fun of him among his colleagues.

The officer came and called Rehman a Gupta a second time. Offended, Rehman asked the officer if he did not know who he was, and the latter reportedly replied: "Yes, I know, you are a Gupta."

When a shocked Rehman said that he was offended and deemed the comments racist, the officer said: "You can go back to India and take offence. Here in South Africa this country belongs to us."

Even when a security official told the officer that Rehman was the town's mayor, the offender remained undeterred and said: "He may be the mayor in town, but this is our territory."

Rehman said that though he had initially decided to let the matter go after discussing it with local RTI head, he later decided otherwise as he felt this was an opportunity to teach civil servants that they needed to respect the public, the Independent Online reported.

Rehman later filed a charge of crimen injuria in a local police station and said he would refer the matter to the equality court and the human rights commission. Under South African law, crimen injuria is defined as an act of unlawfully, intentionally and seriously impairing the dignity of a person.

Rehman also said that he was speaking to an attorney to take the matter to the high court.

Latest News

11 killed in Pakistan building collapse

At least 11 people, including women and children, were killed Tuesday when a roof of an old building collapsed in Paki ...

66 percent voters satisfied with Modi's performance, functioning: Poll

Nearly two-thirds (66 percent) of voters in a survey have expressed satisfaction with the Narendra ...

Water conservation works under rural job act

The rural development ministry Tuesday ordered district administrations to ensure that water conservation work like construction of check d ...

Related News

Indian-born Researcher at Stanford Wins Prestigious Award

Himanshu Asnani, 27, an Indian-born mathematics researcher at Stanford University Electrical Enginee ...

Indians in Saudi Arabia asked to get machine-readable passports

The Indian embassy in Saudi Arabia has appealed to all Indians living in the kingdom to get machine- ...

Indian in UAE unable to pay hospital bills

An uninsured Indian man in the UAE has run up more than $160,000 in medical bills after he suffered ...

Post new comment

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Image CAPTCHA
Copy the characters (respecting upper/lower case) from the image.

Rs. 27530 (Per 10g)

Opinion Poll
Do you think KCR would continue celebrating all national events at Golconda Fort beginning from Independence Day?
YesNoCan't say

Comments >>

Matrimony | Photos | Videos | Search | Polls | Archives | Advertise | Letters

© The Siasat Daily, 2012. All rights reserved.
Jawaharlal Nehru Road, Abids, Hyderabad - 500001, AP, India
Tel: +91-40-24744180, Fax: +91-40-24603188
contact@siasat.com