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on SG expats living the best of both worlds, and the Indian persona

The following is an article from the fascist-scum site, Temasek Review. Ed's comment, as placed beneath the article, follows.

A Singapore-based magazine, Pardesi Pulse ( has published an article on the Indian expatriate community in Singapore. Pardesi’s main focus is on the Indian Diaspora. It is distributed free on charge in various locations in Singapore. The article is published in the April/May 2011 issue and written by Aprajita Anil. The title is “Expat Indians living the best of both worlds”.

The main points are follows:

- There are about 400 000 expat Indians and the figure is rising.

- Some had been here more than 10 years while others had been here for a fairly shorter period of time.

- One unconfirmed figure states 2500 expat Indians have taken up Singapore citizenship for the “past one year”.

- Dr Ashutosh Prakash of Tan Tock Seng Hospital has been living in Singapore for 3 years. He says it is quite easy for the expat Indians to adjust as Indians had been an integral part of Singapore society.

- He uses the example of the major Indian festival Diwali is a national holiday. In addition, there is the wide availability of Indian culture ranging from food to films.

- He also mentions that if he needs to go back home, it is just a 5 hour flight. He feels he is experiencing the best of both worlds.

- Mr Ajay Sundar, manager of a multinational firm, is 7 years old in Singapore. He feels the perception of how locals react to foreigners is critical.

- Ms Divya Bhardwaj, a home-maker. According to her 4.5 years’ local experience, older local Indians are friendlier towards their expat counterparts.  

- Neethiya Sadagopal, communications manager of a multinational corporation (MNC) speaks from a local’s perspective. Some expat Indians think of themselves as the original “desi” (subcontinent Indians) while local Indians have lost their “originality”.

- While the expats try to show off a superior attitude, locals become cold and unfriendly towards the expats.

- The expat Indians interviewed for this article seem to be holding regular PMET (professional, managerial, executive and technician) positions. There is no example of anyone holding a highly-specialized position.  

- There is no mention of positions which are said to be experiencing a so-called shortage of suitable locals as claimed by the ruling PAP (People’s Action Party) regime.

- There is also no suggestion of whether the expat Indian influx is due to the India-Singapore Free Trade Agreement. - source


If you think about it, the so-called ‘native born’ singaporeans also enjoy the ‘best of both worlds’.

The poorer try to get a good education so that they can work in those sectors where they can make more money.

Same thing goes with the NEW foreigners who do likewise and come to singapore to make more money.

They can be richer amongst the poorer in their country of origin, whilst the ‘native-born’ singaporeans from the poorer classes who make more money can be richer amongst the poorer native-borns. The same thing, by the way, applies to the expat forefathers of the current ‘native-born’ Indians and Chinese.

As I’ve always said to Chinese or Indians who bring up this issue, “where do you think your foreparents came from man? Geylang Serai? Ang Sua? Wei peng yew a, mai kong lan chiao wei ok”

if singapore wasn’t so biased toward the chinese for so long, the chinese and non-chinese would have been smart enough to not need as much ‘foreign talent’, and would have ousted a government that has been validated in its self-absorbed course for just about half a century by popular, and mostly chinese, apathy.
Anyway, if singapore wasn’t so biased toward the chinese for so long, the chinese and non-chinese would have been smart enough to not need as much ‘foreign talent’, and would have ousted a government that has been validated in its self-absorbed course for just about half a century by popular, and mostly chinese, apathy. The chinese were taught to couch themselves in self-absorbed complacency by the government, and now they’re paying the price for it by ensuing socio-economic-political impotence. It’s called ‘poetic justice’ mate, albeit tragic.

Well, with regards to what some India Indians might think of ‘native-born’ Indians losing their ‘originality’.

I have to agree.

The ‘Indians’ of today are pretty much Chinese in persona – or more accurately, ‘Confucian’ in persona and perspective. They, unlike the Indians or Chinese I knew in the 70s and 80s, aren’t as analytical, witty, or critical, and are not as inclined to engage with novel ideas as both the Chinese and Indians were back then.

The difference between the ‘native-born’ ‘Indians’ and the south Indians are obvious enough when one watches Tamil films and philosophical forums. And the local Indians of today are less multiculturally welcoming than the s.Indians as well. I’ve witnessed more xenophobia amongst them than i would have in the past. That is not really ‘original Indian’ as India is a multicultural state and has been for thousands of years – which also contributes to their critical and logical propensities compared to the China Chinese.

That is what happens when the Indian persona is not allowed room for expression and development, and suffered marginalisation for not being like the ‘majority’. Fragmentation via the HDB quota system, the SAP school system, media discrimination, etc, etc, etc, didn’t help either. As Mandarin became ‘cool’ and an ‘advantage’, the non-Chinese lost their cultural space. Singapore lost a great resource when the Indian persona was marginalised to near-extinction.



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