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Re: indians



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Administrative Note:
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Week's Agenda: Political & administrative reforms
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<< This is interesting to work out.  So the Embassy in Washington or 
Moscow organises an event for the benefit of Indians who are Indian 
passport-holders.  How do you propose it keep out those of Indian 
origin who do not have Indian passports?  Will you require the Embassy 
to ask every person who arrives to produce Indian passports before 
they are let in?  What of foreigners, then, including "white" or 
"black" foreigners who might be invited as "special guests"?  Are you 
seriously suggesting that these should be let in but not people of 
Indian origin who have reluctantly or willingly traded their Indian 
passports for other ones but still retain some love in their hearts 
for India and perhaps work with IP or other organisations for the good 
of India whereas the "guests" may be just that or people interested in 
India only because they stand to gain from their involvemet with her?  
>>
  
Gosh, professor. That's just a terrible example. I don't really care who 
gets invited to parties anywhere. I hope the kind of social organization 
we are debating is more than about trivia like that. That said, I see no 
reason why, if an event is organized specifically for Indian citizens, 
verifying their citizenship should be anything other than standard. 

A flippant example doesn't score any points. They do ask for your 
passport at the customs office, is there any particular reason why you 
should be considered a different person simply because your passport is 
not Indian? You would still be the same person, after all, regardless. 
But that is neither here nor there. Every society must decide how 
flexible its boundaries are, and what I propose is perfectly consistent 
with that. 

<< And if you propose that such a curious course of action should 
seriously be pursued do you think that non-passport-holding Indians 
will for long continue to be interested in IP and indeed in India 
itself? >>

Why would anyone care? Compassion and concern for our fellow-humans is a 
conviction of my heart, professor. Not an onus dumped on me by my 
passport. Nobody's holding you here against your will, you are here 
because you want to be. The question is - do we (citizens) want you to 
share with us in any ways?

Frankly, I am surprised at your tangent, since I proposed a perfectly 
reasonable thing. Of course, I want to facilitate non-citizens (please 
don't use the term NRIs to describe non-citizens, they are persons of 
Indian origin) to feel welcome in Indian things too. The way to do that 
is expand what we would like the government to do. THat is why I 
suggested that the government should promote the interests of its 
citizens, AND encourage the interests of other significant groups who 
might not be citizens. I have no beef against foreigners.

Incidentally, this is true in several other matters too. When we speak 
of government, when we speak of policies we want government to pursue, 
and so on, we are not developing ideas for any old nation to pick up on. 
That might happen, but our specific intent is to build India, our 
country. Anyone is welcome to build India, but that does not make it 
their country. I've done tons of research for the US government, but 
that does not make me American. 

A primary concern of any social organization is that members of the 
society be amenable to each others' interests. Serving in the armed 
forces is an interest, creating jobs is an interest. I might trust some 
to do the latter who are foreigners, but fewer to do the former. Some 
distinctions are necessary. The loose standard you propose assumes a 
total lack of conflicts, which is just not real.

By all means facilitate the foreigners' interest. But citizens must come 
first. Members of my society occupy a greater position within the 
society than non-members, indeed this is not much different from what 
your own country requires, I'm sure. I'm all for supporting Indians with 
foreign passports, visa-free travel, open investment, etc., but these 
are things I would normally extend to any well-heeled person willing to 
invest in India, why only ethnic Indians?

I fail to see what special affinity to India you are claiming as the 
basis for your position. My American friends care about India, should 
they be considered any different from you? Should I make a distinction 
among them depending on who's ethnic Indian and who is black? Why or why 
not?

Ash

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