• Tuesday, May 24, 2022

HEADLINE STORY

Indians favour Tories despite voting Labour in 2019, study reveals

Baroness Sandip Verma

By: Pramod Thomas

A NEW study has revealed that voting pattern of British Indians in 2021 has now been shifted towards the Conversative Party from Labour in 2019.

The study by the 1928 Institute, a University of Oxford backed think-tank, also said that only 8 per cent of British Indians feel accurately represented by policymakers and detail their political priorities for local and national government.

It further pointed out that younger voters are more inclined to vote for Conservative, despite previously supporting Labour.

An analysis of over 2,300 British Indians in the UK has found that despite the majority (36 per cent) voting Labour in the 2019 general elections, the 2021 local elections will see a shift, with British Indians now showing support for Conservative party (33 per cent) and Labour falling behind at 31 per cent.

The study conducted between August 2020 and December 2020 has revealed that the most sizeable change in voting preference is from those aged between 21 to 50, with 45.9 per cent respondents moving away from Labour resulting in the Conservative party picking up the majority of these voters (48.8 per cent).

However, the analysis found the narrowest gap by age group is 26-30, with just a 2 per cent margin in the Conservative party’s favour.

Besides, 4 in 5 British Indians (84 per cent) want the government to prioritise tackling racism and colonialism. They stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement calling for resources and capital to promote equality and human rights across all ethnic minorities.

“The journey of Indians in the UK has been a fascinating one, marked with bringing great culture and value to these shores. I’m proud to see a new generation of young British Indians rising to the challenge to create the first think-tank to research and represent the community,” said Baroness Sandip Verma, chair, UN Women (UK).

“This was much needed and the report provides a unique insight into many previously unexplored areas. These detailed evidence based recommendations provide a strong foundation for engagement in seeking the need to ensure more is done to tackle anti-Indian prejudice and to explore the contemporary impacts of colonialism .”

According to the report, British Indian’s were more likely to vote Labour across most regions in August 2020, except Scotland, where the Conservative Party took the lead, highlighting that the manifesto of the SNP did not align with the political needs and wants of British Indians.

The regions with the narrowest difference in support between the Labour and Conservative Party are the East of England (4 per cent), followed by Greater London (6 per cent) and the South East (8 per cent), the study said.

“In December 2020, the majority of British Indians were inclined to vote for the Conservative Party. Although Labour retained support in the North West, South East, West Midlands. British Indians across Yorkshire and Humber are inclined to the Conservative and Labour Parties equally (35 per cent respectively). In addition, in the South West, the Liberal Democrats emerged as the strongest party,” the study added.

Many respondents said that the British Indian Diaspora were not vocal about their needs and instead focused on settling into their communities. As a result, feel that current and future generations will continue to be overlooked.

British Indians want the government to give priority to education (54 per cent), health (52 per cent), environment and climate change (44 per cent), domestic poverty (36 per cent), and equalities and human rights (33 per cent) as they align with their cultural values of giving back to society, or “Seva”, along with the importance of taking care of the vulnerable.

They feel that black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) is not a useful concept as it incorrectly informs the distribution of resources and identity, the study further said.

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