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Sri Aurobindo

Bande Mataram

Early Political Writings. 1890 — May 1908

Bande Mataram. 20 August, 1906

Indians Abroad

India to hand this mail laments the exclusion of Indians from the representative system on which the new constitution in the Transvaal is to be based and plaintively recalls the professions and promises of the British Government at the time of the Boer War. The saintly simplicity of India grows daily more and more wearisome to us. Everybody who knew anything at all about politics understood at the time that those professions were merely a diplomatic move and the promises made were never meant to be carried out. We see no reason to lament what was always foreseen. What we do regret and blame is the spirit of Indians in the Transvaal who seek escape from the oppression they suffer under by ignoble methods similar in spirit to those practised by the constitutionalists in this country. The more the Transvaal Indians are kicked and insulted, the more loyal they seem to become. After their splendid services in the Transvaal war had been rewarded by the grossest ingratitude, they had no business to offer their services again in the recent Natal rebellion. By their act they associated themselves with the colonists in their oppression of the natives of the country and have only themselves to thank if they also are oppressed by the same narrow and arrogant colonial spirit. Their eagerness to dissociate themselves from the Africans is shown in Dr. Abdurrahman's letter quoted by India. All such methods are as useless as they are unworthy. So long as the Indian nation at home does not build itself into a strong and self-governing people, they can expect nothing from Englishmen in their colonies except oppression and contumely.

 

Later edition of this work: The Complete Works of Sri Aurobindo.- Set in 37 volumes.- Volumes 6-7.- Bande Mataram: Political Writings and Speeches. 18901908 .- Pondicherry: Sri Aurobindo Ashram, 2002.- 1182 p.