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Could the war between Pakistan and India spread to UK?

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    Could the war between Pakistan and India spread to UK?,00.html

    'If it kicks off, we will see fighting in Britain.'

    Asian communities fear the conflict may spread over here, writes Paul Harris
    Observer Worldview

    Sunday May 26, 2002
    The Observer

    NIRMAL SINGH was born in England and grew up believing that the age-old ethnic and religious disputes of south Asia would never affect him.
    But now he fears he may have been wrong. As war looms over Kashmir, Britain's diverse Asian communities are worried they will be dragged into the conflict.

    'I noticed that when I went into a Pakistani shop recently they looked at my turban and they all went quiet,' said Singh
    , who works in his family business in the Birmingham suburb of Handsworth. 'I know everyone is talking about the trouble, but we've just got to talk peace and getting along. It is very worrying.'

    The sabre-rattling between India and Pakistan over Kashmir has come at a time when relations between Britain's Pakistani and Indian communities are already strained following 11 September.

    Some Hindu and Sikh leaders have sought to distance themselves from Pakistanis in reaction to a general public perception that lumps them all together as 'Asians'.
    They have pressured Asian radio station Sunrise Radio to drop the term Asian and refer instead to individual communities.

    Last year's race riots in Pakistani or Bangladeshi communities also tested relations. In some incidents, rioting youths attacked Hindu-owned businesses. In response, the far-Right British National Party ran an anti-Islamic campaign, lining up with some Sikh and Hindu extremists.

    Community leaders have called for calm: 'We would urge that no one engage in any sort of actions against the Hindu community in Britain,' said Inayat Bunglawala, a spokesman for the Muslim Council of Britain. 'Our argument is with the Indian government, not ordinary people.'

    The sentiment strikes a chord on the streets of Birmingham, which has substantial minorities from both sides. But there is still a genuine fear that violence in Kashmir could spread to Britain. 'If it kicks off in Kashmir, then I am sure we will see fighting here,' said Soony Harry, a Pakistani who runs a family shoe shop in Handsworth. 'Even good friends will end up fighting each other.'

    For Harry, whose family is Kashmiri, living in England has given him a sense of perspective. 'I'm from Kashmir and I'm not bothered about the politics. We all get along here in England, so why not there?'

    The dispute has also revealed a generation gap in both communities. Among older people who were born abroad, the issue of Kashmir is very much alive. They talk of terrorists and plebiscites with a passion that has not dimmed over the decades. But among many young British-Asians it is less important. They are more concerned with football and fashion than the ancient politics of their parents.

    In Southall, Middlesex, where Muslims, Sikhs and Hindus rub shoulders on the busy high street, there is no real argument among youths hanging out on street corners.

    'Our lifestyle is different here,' said Robin Chopra, a 24-year-old unemployed Indian. 'We all get along fine and don't really see Kashmir as anything to do with us.'

    high unemployement rate in UK, especially among the asian communities will lead to such riots that they had this past year in cities like manchester etc. these ppl have too much free time.
    I am only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.


      It won't happen in the South but in hotspots like the Midlands and Northwest it's pretty likely.

      The summer Melas are also going to need extra security in place. If there's a war going on there'll always be some idiots who want to use it as an excuse to release some steam.


        This doesnt scare me as much as the fallout that will hit us if there is a nuclear war.
        most people just seem to want everybody to get along


          Well that would be a catstrophy, for the whole world not only the sub-continent, but its only when some good sense prevails in Vajpayee busy in his vacation in the Himalayas.