British imperialism is a legacy that India lives with – along with its dark past of “looting, expropriation and outright theft – all conducted in deep spirit of racism an amoral cynicism,” as Congress MP Shashi Tharoor puts it.
Speaking to host Jon Snow of Channel 4 News, Tharoor detailed how little Britain knew about the colonial atrocities: “Britain financed its industrial revolution and its prosperity from the depredations of empire. Britain came to one of the richest countries in the world (India) in the early 18th century and reduced it, after 200 years of plunder, to one of the poorest.”
The former UN diplomat called it “historical amnesia”, stating that while there’s “no need to have a chip on our shoulder,” one should know where ones comes from. “How will you appreciate where you’re going?,” said Tharoor after asserting that he was not talking about current relations between India and Britain, which have come a long way.
“As I have often argued, you do not need to seek revenge upon history. History is its own revenge,” writes Tharoor.