Labour no longer respects Indian community, says peer

Chris McAndrew

An Indian Tory peer today accused Jeremy Corbyn of failing to treat his community with “respect”.

Lord Popat said he was “disgusted” when the Labour conference passed a motion attacking India’s actions over Kashmir and said it smacked of a “divide and rule” strategy.

It comes amid a Tory attempt to woo voters of Indian descent who could be critical to the outcome in key marginal seats such as Harrow East.

“British Indians historically have been supportive of the Labour Party — a movement that gave India its independence and treated British Indians with respect,” said Lord Popat.

“That has all changed under Corbyn — he shamelessly sows the seeds of divide and rule like a colonial master.”

Britain's opposition Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn (AFP via Getty Images)

Labour’s leadership has tried to distance itself from the grassroots conference motion which critics claimed was “anti-Indian”. But the row has played to the Tories’ charm offensive.

Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds visited the Swaminarayan Mandir temple in Neasden this weekend, on their first campaign outing together.

A Labour spokesman said the motion’s language could “lead to misunderstandings about Labour policy” and added: “The political status of Kashmir is for India and Pakistan to resolve together.”

Meanwhile, a video has gone viral featuring a song sung in Hindi which claims Mr Johnson will solve all the issues plaguing Britain and shows him holding hands with Indian PM Narendra Modi. It is not known who created it.