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Mauritius President Kailash Purryag resigns from office

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Port Louis: Mauritius President Kailash Purryag has resigned from office, an official statement said.

The statement said that Purryag sent his letter of resignation to the Speaker of the National Assembly of Mauritius on Friday, Xinhua news agency reported on Saturday.

Purryag was appointed president in 2012 by the island’s previous Labour party government of former premier Navin Ramgoolam.

In a statement broadcasted on a private radio channel in the island, Purryag said that he had agreed to step down as Head of State in January 2015 but did ask for some five months to implement the decision.

His move paves the way for the country to have first female Head of State, well known scientist and researcher Ameenah Gurib-Fakim. (IANS)

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Ahead of next month’s crucial elections, Indian filmmaker-writer Pankaj Dubey joins Britain’s Labour Party

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Britain's Labour Party Leader,Jeremy Corbyn, Twitter

Mumbai, May 3, 2017: Ahead of next month’s crucial elections in Great Britain, Mumbai-based author and filmmaker Pankaj Dubey has joined the Labour Party.

Welcoming him, Labour Party General Secretary Iain McNicol said members like (Dubey) would be the party’s greatest strength, especially during a general election.

Thanking him for “joining at this most important time”, McNicol said in a letter that “We must keep our movement growing to ensure we are as strong as possible on (election day) June 8.”

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British Prime Minister Theresa May announced a snap poll in a very volatile political situation in the backdrop of Brexit.

“I shall soon meet Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and brief him on issues pertaining to the Indian Diaspora in the UK and my plans to work among them,” Dubey, 38, told IANS here today on Wednesday.

“I decided to join the UK’s Labour Party as I think I can relate quite organically with its vision, modus operandi and ‘all inclusiveness’.”

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He said the Labour party has launched a drive to invite people to join it from across Commonwealth countries. “I am ecstatic to share the fact that the Labour Party is open to members coming from across the Commonwealth landscape globally,” Dubey added.

Dubey said he is not averse to settling down in the UK and fighting elections there in the future. He acquired his lawyer degree from University of Delhi followed by a Masters in Applied Communication from Coventry School of Art & Design, England.

Born in Ranchi, Jharkhand, Dubey is a best-selling bilingual novelist and filmmaker known for his books “What A Loser!” and “Ishqiyapa – To Hell With Love.”

A former journalist with BBC in London and the Resident Editor of Pravasi Today magazine for Indian Diaspora, Dubey said he later moved into filmmaking and is currently working on a couple of titles.

He was instrumental in organizing India’s first street film fest for slum and rural kids, ‘Sadak Chhaap Film Festival’ around seven years ago. (IANS)

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Will Indian Origin Voters support the Britain’s Labour Party?

Britain’s Indian community has traditionally voted Labour, though there has been a shift over the decades

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London Bridge, Pixabay

UK, April 27, 2017: As campaigning gathers pace for Britain’s snap general election, with many polls suggest a comfortable lead for the Conservative Party, but the question remains how Britain’s Indian community will vote? The 1.5 million people within the diaspora constitute a sizeable chunk of the electorate, particularly in areas such as Leicester, or London neighborhoods such as Southall.

According to The Hindu report, Britain’s Indian community has traditionally voted Labour, though there has been a shift over the decades. “The older generations had very strong links with local Labour parties and there was community voting… Now it’s a mixture of younger generations being assimilated as Asian British and less likely to follow the lead of their parents…and fewer community bonds,” says Dr. Stephen Fisher, professor of political sociology and an expert on political behavior at Oxford University.

Labour have seen a collapse in their crucial ethnic minority vote since 2010 in a blow for Ed Miliband with three-quarters of Indian voters abandoning the party.

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Influential pollsters say that members belonging to Labour Party are mistaken in their belief they are “sitting pretty” with the ethnic minority vote and Indian, Pakistani and African voters are turning away from the party in huge numbers.

The number of Indian voters identifying themselves with the Labour party have fallen from 77 percent in 1997 to just 18 percent in 2014 – a fall of over three quarters, according to the figures from the British Election Study.

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Complicating the situation will be the outcome of the Brexit referendum last year (2016). While there were efforts by the Leave campaign to woo the Asian voters with promises of being able to go soft on non-EU immigrants once Britain was out of the EU (European Union), the results suggest this had only limited impact, and Indians voted clearly to remain, mentioned The Hindu report.

There are many other factors that are likely to come into play, such as current consultation on the introduction of anti-caste legislation, which was used by some groups in 2015 to push Hindus in particular to support the Conservatives. The Labour Party’s shift to the left, and the appeal of leader Jeremy Corbyn will also come into play, as will the extent to which members of the community, particularly younger people, will be motivated to vote, says Dr. Martin.

– prepared by Nikita Tayal of NewsGram, Twitter: @NikitaTayal6