Uncovering Hidden Histories: From Naked Yogis to Indentured Laborers

TLDR This podcast episode explores lesser-known aspects of history, including the role of naked yogis in Indian history and the migration of indentured Indian laborers. It also delves into topics such as the Yemeni community in Britain, the British presence in India, and the missed opportunity to avoid partition in India.

Timestamped Summary

00:00 The hosts of the podcast are discussing the positive response they have received from listeners around the world, who appreciate the new and important historical information they are providing.
04:27 The hosts discuss the importance of exploring historical subjects that are not commonly taught in educational syllabuses, and mention their plans to cover topics such as early Indian history, the Mughals, the Great Game, and the history of Afghanistan in future episodes.
09:01 The hosts discuss the history of the army of naked yogis and their role in Indian history, as well as the migration of indentured Indian laborers to British colonial territories after the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade.
13:16 The term "Kuli" comes from the Tamil word for payment for occasional menial work, and before 1840, the laborers were called Mahil Kulis, but later the indentured labor system included people from various castes and regions of India, with large numbers being sent to places like Mauritius, where 41,000 Bengali laborers were sent in just one year.
17:37 Indentured labor and modern bonded labor are effectively the same system, with the only difference being a financial exchange, and both involve restrictions on movement and low pay, making them similar to slavery.
21:36 The speaker discusses the history of the Yemeni community in South Shields, the oldest Muslim community in Britain, which dates back to the 18th century.
25:52 The speaker discusses why Europeans were able to take over countries like America, New Zealand, and Australia, but not Africa and India, and why the British were unable to settle permanently in India.
30:20 The British never put down roots in India and were unable to permanently settle there, unlike in America, which led to a different outcome when they were eventually kicked out of India.
35:22 Queen Victoria had affection for some non-white individuals, such as Princess Sophia and Sarah Forbes-Bernetta, but her love was easily withdrawn when they challenged authority, and her attitude towards Indians and Africans was limited by their willingness to adopt Christianity and be obedient.
39:31 The Cabinet Mission Plan was an attempt to have a more orderly transition to independence for India through a federal system with a weaker center and stronger regional powers, but it was ultimately rejected by Nehru and Congress, leading to the partition of India.
43:58 The rejection of the Cabinet Mission Plan by Nehru and Congress is seen by some as a missed opportunity to avoid partition and the subsequent violence.
Categories: History

Uncovering Hidden Histories: From Naked Yogis to Indentured Laborers

19. Federal India, indentured labour, and naked yogis
by Empire

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