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Doklam standoff: China’s Xinhua agency releases racist video parodying Indians

A video with racist overtones that seeks to parody Indians has been issued by China’s state-run Xinhua news agency to give the country’s position on the Doklam standoff.

world Updated: Aug 21, 2017 07:47 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis
Sutirtho Patranobis
Hindustan Times, Beijing
Doklam standoff,racist video,Xinhua news agency
Screengrab from the video with racist overtones on the Doklam standoff issued by China’s state-run Xinhua news agency. (Twitter screengrab)

China’s official Xinhua news agency on Wednesday released a video with racist overtones that mocked and parodied Indians - the latest salvo against India by the state media against the backdrop of the military standoff at Doklam near the Sikkim border.

The video in English runs a little more than three minutes and is titled the “7 Sins of India: It’s time for India to confess its seven sins”. It features a man with a turban and a fake beard - an apparent attempt at parodying a Sikh - speaking the way Indians are perceived to speak English.

The video particularly targets the Sikh minority, and for some perplexing reason, the “Indian” is seen to be brandishing a pair of scissors.

The video is a follow-up of a commentary titled “Indian military's seven ‘sins’ in trespassing into Chinese territory” that Xinhua issued last week.

“Nobody is blaming me because I am asleep,” the “Indian” in the video says, apparently to signify that in reality everyone is blaming India for the standoff.

“China has realised it is impossible to awaken a guy who is pretending to asleep,” the woman hosting the video says.

In what could be a mistake triggered by lack of sleep on the part of the video editing staff, the fairly simple English word “because” is wrongly spelt in the subtitles in this section of the video.

“He is building a path in his garden. I am in danger,” the “Indian” in the video says in an exasperated fashion in another sequence – this appears to be Xinhua’s way of mocking India and saying that there is no danger and the security concerns that India has raised are just an excuse.

The seven “biblical” sins that India seemed to have committed, according to the video, are: trespassing, violating a bilateral convention, trampling international law, confusing right and wrong, putting the blame on the victim, hijacking a small neighbour and sticking to a mistake knowingly.

The host says Indian troops drove bulldozers into the neighbour’s “house” without knocking. “What kind of neighbour would that be?” she asks.

“Didn’t your mama tell you, never break the law?” she then mocks India.

Under the deadly “sin” of “hijacking a small neighbour”, the Xinhua video then gets in a fairly unsuspecting and allegedly “Bhutanese” national.

“Don’t move, this is Bhutan’s home. I am here protecting it,” the “Indian” says while the “Bhutanese” is made to look perplexed and deny the statement, maybe under the threat of the scissors that the “Indian” is seen to be wielding.

Xinhua is the Chinese government’s most important news agency and it is controlled by the country’s cabinet, the State Council.

The standoff at Doklam, which is under Beijing’s control but is claimed by Thimphu, began on June 16 after Indian troops acted in coordination with Bhutanese authorities to block the construction of a road by Chinese forces.

First Published: Aug 16, 2017 22:10 IST