Rise of Africans in India shows country’s openness


New York: India’s openness reflected in the rise of the Africans, who came to India as slaves to the political and military positions, said UN Syed Akbaruddin yesterday at an inauguration ceremony of an exhibition related to the rise of African slaves to positions of military and political authority at the UN headquarters in New York.

“The rise of Africans, who came to India as slaves to positions of generals and princes is reflective of India’s openness,” said Akbaruddin.

The exhibition was organized by Dr Sylviane, Director of the LapidusCenter for Historical Analysis of Transatlantic Slavery at the Schomburg Center and Dr Kenneth X Robbins, collector and expert in Indian art. The exhibition started from Christened Africans in India: From Slaves to General and will continue till March 30 on display at the UN headquarters.

Habshis and Sidis, the East Africans enslaved in India and their rose in positions to military and political authority tells in the exhibition.

The exhibition shades light on how Indian society open-mindedness reflected the Africans who were an ethnic minority and small religion in the society. It also tells about the slave trade in the Indian Ocean and history of Africa and its diaspora in India.

Akbaruddin said that there are great scope for African in India and also mentioned a Nigerian Ugochi Latoya Igwilo who is one of India’s top model.

The exhibition is beautifully portrayed by pictures and texts.It is a part of the observance of the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade, which is held every year on March 25.

“Remember Slavery: Celebrating the Heritage and Culture of the African Diaspora and its Roots” is the theme this year. The exhibition has been held in some Indian cities and UNESCO in Paris. It was also shown at the Third India-Africa Forum Summit in October 2015 in New Delhi.(IANS)